UTERINE PROLAPSE

Description

  • Pelvic organ prolapse is bulging of one or more of the pelvic organs into the vagina
  • may be incomplete or complete

Symptoms

  1. Sensation of heaviness or pulling in your pelvis
  2. Tissue protruding from your vagina
  3. Urinary problems, such as urine leakage or urine retention
  4. Trouble having a bowel movement
  5. Low back pain
  6. Feeling as if you’re sitting on a small ball or as if something is falling out of your vagina
  7. Sexual concerns, such as a sensation of looseness in the tone of your vaginal tissue
  8. Symptoms that are less bothersome in the morning and worsen as the day goes on

Causes

  1. Pregnancy
  2. Trauma during childbirth
  3. Delivery of a large baby
  4. Difficult labor and delivery
  5. Less circulating estrogen after menopause

Risk factors

  • One or more pregnancies and vaginal births
  • Giving birth to a large baby
  • Increasing age
  • Frequent heavy lifting
  • Chronic coughing
  • Prior pelvic surgery
  • Frequent straining during bowel movements
  • Genetic predisposition to weakness in connective tissue
  • Being Hispanic or white

Diagnostic Tests

  • pelvic exam
  • urodynamics
  • MRI

Treatments

  • weight loss (to take stress off of pelvic structures)
  • avoiding heavy lifting
  • Kegel exercises (pelvic floor exercises that help strengthen the vaginal muscles)
  • estrogen replacement therapy
  • pessary (a device inserted into the vagina that fits under the cervix and helps push up and stabilize the uterus and cervix)
  • surgery: hysterectomy (the uterus is removed from the body, either through the abdomen or through the vagina)
  • uterine suspension (the uterus is placed back into its original position by reattaching pelvic ligaments or using surgical materials)

Prevention

  • doing regular pelvic floor exercises
  • maintaining a healthy weight or losing weight if you’re overweight
  • eating a high-fibre diet with plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, and wholegrain bread and cereal to avoid constipation and straining when going to the toilet
  • avoiding heavy lifting
  • Control coughing
  • Avoid weight gain