Prolapse of Pelvic Organs
Pelvic organ prolapse happens when one of your pelvic organs, such as your bladder, drops or prolapses from its usual spot in your lower belly and pushes against the vaginal walls. This usually happens when the muscles that tightly holds your pelvic organs in place, gets either weak or stretched due to childbirth or surgery.
The pelvic organs that are generally involved in pelvic prolapse include the:
- Small bowel
Cause of Pelvic Prolapse
- Weakening or stretching of muscles during childbirth.
- Hysterectomy or surgical removal of the uterus
- Severe and long-lasting cough
- Frequent constipation
- Tumours in the pelvic organ
Symptoms of Pelvic Prolapse
- Feeling pressure due to the pelvic organs pressing against the vaginal wall
- Feeling completely full in your lower belly
- Feeling as if something is protruding or falling out of your vagina
- Feeling as if your groin area is being stretched or pain in your lower back region
- Urinary incontinence
- Frequent urination
- Pain in the vagina during sexual intercourse
The doctors will go through your medical history and will also do a physical examination including a pelvic exam.
The treatment will be based on the pelvic organs which have prolapsed and the related symptoms.
If you have only mild symptoms, then you can do special exercises, called Kegels, to enhance the strength and firmness of your pelvic muscles. Try to maintain a healthy weight. Reduce the intake of caffeine, which is a diuretic and can cause you to urinate frequently. Do not lift heavy things that put pressure on your pelvic muscles.
The doctor may also recommend placing a removable device in your vagina called a pessary camera to help relieve the pain and pressure of pelvic organ prolapse. It helps to tightly hold the pelvic organs in position. However, if you have a severe pelvic prolapse, then you may have great difficulty in keeping a pessary in place.
Surgery is yet another treatment for severe pelvic organ prolapse. Surgery could be considered if:
- You have intense pain due to the prolapsed organ.
- You have difficulty with your bladder and bowels.
- You find it hard to enjoy sex.
The different types of surgery for pelvic organ prolapse include:
- Surgery for repairing the tissue that supports a prolapsed organ.
- Surgery for repairing the tissue that surrounds your vagina.
- Surgery to close the opening of the vagina.
Pelvic organ prolapse can occur even after surgery. Doing Kegel exercises to strengthen your pelvic muscles will ensure faster recovery from surgery.