In July 2014, Kim met with Heather Gangloff, her physician assistant (PA), for what was supposed to be a routine physical exam. But after feeling something unusual in Kim’s abdomen, Heather suggested that she see a gynecologist and promptly scheduled an appointment. Just two days later, Kim found herself in Dr. Farah Shafi’s office to discuss the results of an ultrasound.
Kim knew Dr. Shafi. Two years prior, an ultrasound revealed four non-cancerous fibroids that Kim and Dr. Shafi successfully managed without surgery. This time, however, was different – Dr. Shafi found six fibroids, much larger than before.
“While she gave me several options, it was obvious they [the fibroids] were beginning to interfere with my quality of life, and surgery, a hysterectomy, might be the best option for me,” Kim says.
Dr. Shafi referred Kim to Dr. Jyoti Yadav, a gynecologic surgeon at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates. After a thorough discussion about her medical history, including symptoms of urinary incontinence, constant bleeding, and fatigue, Kim and Dr. Yadav decided that a hysterectomy would be the best way to move forward.
As a sixth grade math teacher, Kim’s primary concern in scheduling surgery was being away from her students. She hoped to postpone her procedure until Christmas vacation to minimize her time away and recover over the holiday break. “But after talking more with Dr. Yadav – I just really liked her, she’s so unassuming and at the same time so very talented – I just trusted her when she urged me to think about me and getting my life back to where I wanted it.”
With that mind Kim scheduled the surgery for October 3rd. “I was lucky to get a terrific substitute for my class, and although the kids didn’t know what I was out for, they knew I was having surgery,” she explains. The morning of October 3rd, Kim underwent robotic laproscopic surgery at nearby Mt. Auburn Hospital.
Kim attributes the successful procedure to Dr. Yadav, who assured her throughout her surgery day that she would not have to be in the hospital overnight. “I went home at 4pm that day,” Kim says. “With Dr. Yadav being so positive, I just didn’t have any of those worries that I’d have to spend the night in a strange place, not sleeping, and I think it gave me the extra strength to indeed walk out that day and go home to my family and my own bed.”
Kim visited Dr. Yadav twice after the procedure, and once Dr. Yadav cleared her to exercise, Kim began to prepare for her transition back into a school day schedule. Within just three weeks of the hysterectomy, a classroom full of cheerful mathematicians were reunited with their teacher.