How you prepare

To prepare for an oophorectomy, your doctor may ask that you:

  • Drink a solution to clear your intestines the day before surgery
  • Stop eating the day before your surgery and limit liquids
  • Stop taking certain medications
  • Undergo imaging tests, such as ultrasound and computerized tomography (CT), to help surgeons plan for the procedure

Plan for a hospital stay

You may need to stay in the hospital for a few days after an oophorectomy. How long you stay depends on how the procedure is performed and the reason for your surgery. Ask your doctor what you can expect.

Plan ahead for time in the hospital by packing:

  • A robe and slippers
  • Personal items, such as your toothbrush
  • Things to help you pass the time, such as books and magazines

Plan for infertility

If you want to have children, talk with your doctor about your options. For some conditions, you may need only one ovary removed (unilateral oophorectomy). With the remaining ovary, you'll still have a menstrual cycle and conceive naturally.

If both of your ovaries are removed (bilateral oophorectomy), but your uterus remains, you may be able to become pregnant using assisted reproductive technology. Ask your doctor to refer you to a fertility specialist who can review your options with you.