Pelvic organ prolapse - Treatment 

Treating a pelvic organ prolapse 

Hysterectomy

If you've been advised that you need a hysterectomy, you might have a lot of questions, such as: Do I really need this operation? How will it affect me? Are there any alternatives? Professor Lesley Regan advises.

Media last reviewed: 23/04/2014

Next review due: 23/04/2016

Compare your options

Take a look at a simple guide to the pros and cons of different treatments for pelvic organ prolapse

There are several treatment options available for a pelvic organ prolapse, depending on your circumstances. 

The treatment most suitable for you will depend on:

  • the severity of your symptoms
  • the severity of the prolapse
  • your age and health
  • whether you are planning to have children in the future

You may not need any treatment if your prolapse is mild to moderate and not causing any pain or discomfort.

Self-care advice

If your prolapse is mild, there are some steps you can take that may help improve the condition or reduce the risk of it getting worse.

This may include:

  • doing regular pelvic floor exercises (see below)
  • losing weight if you are overweight, or maintaining a healthy weight for your build (you can check your body mass index (BMI) using the healthy weight calculator)
  • 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 and standing up for long periods of time

If you smoke, you should give up because the persistent cough most smokers have can make a prolapse worse. See stopping smoking for more information and advice.

Pelvic floor exercises

Your pelvic floor muscles are muscles that you use to control the flow of urine from your bladder. They surround the bladder and the tube that carries urine from the bladder to outside the body (urethra).

Having weak or damaged pelvic floor muscles can make a prolapse more likely. Recent evidence suggests pelvic floor exercises may help improve a mild prolapse or reduce the risk of it getting worse.

Pelvic floor exercises are also used to treat urinary incontinence (when you leak urine), so may be useful if this is one of your symptoms.

Read more about treating urinary incontinence.

To help strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, sit comfortably and squeeze the muscles 10-15 times in a row. Do not hold your breath or tighten your stomach, buttock, or thigh muscles at the same time.

When you get used to doing this, you can try holding each squeeze for a few seconds. Every week, you can add more squeezes, but be careful not to overdo it and always have a rest inbetween sets of squeezes.

Your doctor may refer you to a physiotherapist, who will be able to teach you how to do pelvic floor exercises. It may take a few months before you notice any improvement.

Read more about pelvic floor exercises.

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

While there is little evidence that a treatment called hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can directly treat pelvic organ prolapse, it can help relieve some of the symptoms associated with prolapse, such as dryness of the vagina or discomfort during sex.

HRT involves the use of medication to increase the level of a hormone called oestrogen in women who have been through the menopause.

HRT medication is available as:

  • a cream you apply to your vagina
  • a tablet you insert into your vagina
  • a patch you stick on your skin
  • an implant inserted under your skin

HRT is widely used for women who have symptoms of a prolapse after menopause. It may be combined with surgery, pelvic floor muscle exercises or vaginal pessaries (see below). 

Vaginal pessaries

A vaginal ring pessary is a device inserted into the vagina to hold the prolapse back. It works by holding the vaginal walls in place. Ring pessaries are usually made of latex (rubber) or silicone and come in different shapes and sizes.

Ring pessaries may be an option if your prolapse is more severe but you would prefer not to have surgery. A gynaecologist (a specialist in treating conditions of the female reproductive system) or a specialist nurse usually fits a pessary.

The pessary may need to be removed and replaced every few months, usually by a health professional.

Side effects

Ring pessaries can occasionally cause vaginal discharge, some irritation and possibly bleeding and sores inside your vagina. Other common side effects include:

  • an imbalance of the usual bacteria found in your vagina (bacterial vaginosis
  • passing a small amount of urine when you cough, sneeze or exercise (stress incontinence)
  • difficulty with bowel movements
  • interference with having sex, although most women can have intercourse without any problems

These side effects can usually be treated.

Surgery

Surgery may be an option for treating a prolapse if it is felt that the possible benefits outweigh the risks.

In general, surgery for pelvic organ prolapse is relatively common. It is estimated that 1 in 10 women will have had surgery for prolapse by the time they are 80 years old.

Surgery is used to repair the tissue that supports the prolapsed organ or tissue around the vagina.

Surgery to remove the womb (hysterectomy) may also form part of your treatment, but this does not directly treat a prolapse. 

These procedures are outlined below.

Surgical repair

One of the main surgical treatments for pelvic organ prolapse involves improving support for the pelvic organs.

This may involve stitching prolapsed organs back into place, as well as stitching existing tissue to make it stronger.

Pelvic organ repair may be done through the vagina or through cuts (incisions). It is usually carried out under general anaesthetic, so you will be asleep during the operation and will not feel any pain.

This type of operation is usually recommended if you want to have children in the future. Your doctors may suggest delaying surgery until you are sure you no longer want to have any more children, however, because pregnancy can cause the prolapse to recur.

Vaginal mesh

Surgery for pelvic organ prolapse may not always be successful and the prolapse can return, meaning another operation may be needed.

For this reason, synthetic (non-absorbable) and biological (absorbable) meshes have been introduced as supporting materials in the surgical treatment of pelvic organ prolapse.

These permanent implants support the vaginal wall and/or internal organs. About 1,500 such operations are carried out in the UK each year.

The majority of women with prolapse who are treated with mesh respond well to this treatment. However, the MHRA has received a number of reports of complications associated with vaginal meshes. The most frequently reported problems have included persistent pain, sexual problems, mesh exposure through vaginal tissues and occasionally injury to nearby organs such as the bladder or bowel.

These reports have not been linked to a single manufacturer’s brand or model and the MHRA has no evidence that the devices themselves have inherent problems that would mean they should be removed from the market. However, as with all devices, the MHRA will continue to keep vaginal meshes for prolapse under careful scrutiny.

If you've recently had vaginal mesh inserted and think there may be complications or you want to find out more about the risks involved, speak to your GP. You can also report an adverse incident on the MHRA website.

If you are thinking about having vaginal mesh inserted, you may want to ask your surgeon some of these questions before you proceed:

  • What are the alternatives?
  • What are the chances of success with the use of mesh versus use of other procedures?
  • What are the pros and cons of using mesh, and what are the pros and cons of alternative procedures?
  • What experience have you had with implanting mesh?
  • What have been the outcomes from the people you have treated?
  • What has been your experience in dealing with any complications that might occur?
  • What if the mesh does not correct my problems?
  • If I have a complication related to the mesh, can it be removed and what are the consequences associated with this?

Hysterectomy

If the womb (uterus) is prolapsed, then removing it during an operation called a hysterectomy often helps the surgeon to give better support to the rest of the vagina and reduce the chance of a prolapse returning.

A hysterectomy will usually only be considered in women who have been through the menopause, as you cannot get pregnant after having a hysterectomy.

Methods to elevate and support the uterus without removing it do exist, but they are not always widely available.

Complications from surgery

All types of surgery carry some risks. Your surgeon will explain these in more detail, but possible complications could include:

  • bleeding, which may require a blood transfusion
  • damage to the surrounding organs, such as your bladder
  • an infection – you may be given antibiotics to take during and after surgery to reduce the risk of infection
  • pain during sex, usually caused by narrowing of the vagina
  • vaginal discharge and bleeding
  • experiencing more prolapse symptoms, which may require further surgery
  • a blood clot forming in one of your veins (for example, in your leg) – you may be given medication to help reduce this risk after surgery (see deep vein thrombosis (DVT) for more information)

Recovering from surgery

Many prolapse operations are done as day surgeries with no overnight stay, although more major operations may require a stay in hospital for one or two days.

If you need to stay in hospital, you may have a drip in your arm to provide fluids and a thin plastic tube called a catheter to drain urine from your bladder. Some gauze will be placed inside your vagina to act as a bandage for the first 24 hours. This may be slightly uncomfortable. Your stitches will usually dissolve on their own after a few weeks. 

For the first few days or weeks after your operation you may have some vaginal bleeding similar to a period. You may also have some vaginal discharge. This may last three or four weeks. During this time you should use sanitary towels rather than tampons.

Enhanced recovery

Enhanced recovery is an NHS initiative to improve patient outcomes after surgery and speed up recovery.

This involves careful planning and preparation before surgery, as well as reducing the stress of surgery by:

  • using pain relief to minimise pain
  • avoiding unnecessary drips, tubes and drains
  • enabling you to eat and drink straight after your operation
  • encouraging early mobilisation

Post-surgery advice

Even with enhanced recovery, there may still be some activities you need to avoid while you recover from surgery. Your care team can advise about activities you may need to avoid, such as heavy lifting and strenuous exercise, and for how long.

Generally, most people are advised to move around as soon as possible, with good rests every few hours.

You can usually shower and bathe as normal after leaving hospital, but you may need to avoid swimming for a few weeks.

You should be able to start having sex again after a short time if your vaginal discharge has stopped.

Your care team will advise about when you can return to work.

Problems with recovery

Vaginal discharge is perfectly normal. However, if the amount of discharge increases over time or becomes smelly, you should contact your GP because you may have an infection. You should also contact your GP if you:

  • have a high temperature (fever) of 38°C (104°F) or over
  • experience severe pain low in your tummy
  • have heavy vaginal bleeding
  • experience a stinging or burning sensation when you pass urine 

Page last reviewed: 26/02/2013

Next review due: 26/02/2015

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Comments

The 31 comments posted are personal views. Any information they give has not been checked and may not be accurate.

Clancampbell said on 03 October 2014

Hi,
I am a physiotherapist who has had prolapse herself. 5 years after successfully improving and controlling my own symptoms I have re-certified in women's health physical therapy so I can help with this common and debilitating problem.

I would encourage you to find help from someone with my training and a passion to help other women. The exercises frequently work if done properly but our research shows that 40% of women do them in such a way as to make themselves worse. Training and education can make a big difference in your lives. Try on your own, but if it's not working, find help. Their is a video called Hab It Pelvic Floor which does a good job of explaining exercises and is quite inexpensive.

Read on the web "Can pelvic floor muscle training prevent and treat pelvic organ prolapse". This shows that you might be helped thru physiotherapy. Research is promising! (though, of course we need bigger numbers and more studies).

Surgery is not always successful and often leads to much worse problems. I was set to have it until I read and talked to others. That's why I chose rehab.

Good health and blessings to all on this site!

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jibby said on 14 September 2014

Hi Iam new to this site Just wantedto give info on my procedures which started over 3yrs ago.Iam 62 and have had 2 ops for rectocele ,cystocele,and entrocele prolapses both of which were done privatley with different surgeons and both of which failed after acouple of months.my main prob has been feeling of bulge bladder /bowels not to bad.Ihave recently on 28th august had a laporoscopic sacrolcopopexy done with yet another supposedly top surgeon again paying and still i have this dreadful lump all be it is pulled up a little more inside Ibelieve it now feels worse.As far as surgeon is concerned he says it was a complete success but Idont want to carry on feeling this lump as cant walk sit etc and find it totally dibilitating.Is there anyone else in same position or can you tell me what can help my situation.sorry for the long rant many thanks for reading Jibby P

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gemma101 said on 07 August 2014

Hi ladies. I've been living with my prolapse for over three years it's made me feel half a woman and very self conscious . Went to see my gp few months back and told her everything was sick of living alone with this horrible problem.
Attended a Gynecological appointment yesterday and the doctor was so lovely. Turns out I have 3 degree rectocele and second degree cystocele so I wasn't imagining it felt like a weight had been lifted off me just telling someone who listened and confirmed my fears. Anyhow had a pessary fitted there and then. Referred for physiotherapy and if that fails which I suspect it will I will be offered surgery which pleases me but also terrifies me too. I just want a working vagina :( I have three children and had episiotomy with my first which looks like I was repaired and stitched by frankenstein . Feel scared incase surgery makes it worse or ruins my already poor sex life. Feel so sorry for any women going through this it feels very degrading . The pessary is causing a aching sensation inside not sure if I like it but will persevere. Keep you posted. Good luck.

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faye2272 said on 18 July 2014

I am 42 and have 5 children between the ages of 3 and 18. I have been diagnosed with a rectocele, cystocele, cervical prolapse and badly repaired perineum. They have all been causing me problems, and after being treated by a physiotherapist without any improvement, I was recomended for surgery to correct all four problems. As i suffer from ehlers-danlos syndrome type 3 (amongst other medical conditions) I am unable to have the repair vaginally and will have to have it abdominally with the repair fixed to my spine rather than to the ligaments. Has anyone else had thjs procedure? If so can you give me any information on it and the expected recovery. I work full time as a midwife and am worried about returning to work as well as home life post procedure. Thanks.

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User887811 said on 14 July 2014

I'm 43 and 5 years ago I had a posterior repair for a rectocyle . I suffered the symptoms in silence for ten years after having a 10lb baby until I saw a woman on embarrasing bodies programme who had the same symptoms as me and how simple the solution was. I used to have to put fingers in my vagina to manipulate feases out of my bowel and never felt like I was able to wipe my bottom correctly after bowel movements. I am obese bmI about 37 even though I'm an 18 in clothes I know weight plays a big factor. I only needed a one night stay in hospital and my bowels worked properly straight away. The difference was night an day. At the time I had a mild vaginal prolapse but I could cope with a bit of incontinence and discomfort but the last few months this has got a lot worse and is now causing a relapse of the rectocyle. I'm just back from my doctor who is referring me to gynaecologist to have a surgical repair on the vaginal prolapse which I'm sure is my bladder starting to come through but the cystitis symptoms are excruciating especially near my periods. I will not hesitate to have the surgery and would happily have repeat if rectocyle surgery every 5 years if necessary because to look back at how I accepted the symptoms to now easily passing bowel movements daily it's a no brainier. I resumed normal sexual activities after 6-8 weeks with some mild discomfort at first but soon passed.please don't suffer in silence

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JenBR said on 02 April 2014

In Feb 2008 I had a full hysterectomy(open incision) and went through the menopause straight away. I have continued to have hot flushes since. I have struggle for a while to fully empty both bowel and bladder and have what can only be described as a large egg pushing from my bowel into my vagina and my bladder feeling like that's dropped down too. I can't assist myself in the bowel motions as i'm disabled which makes life very miserable indeed. I knew when i had my hysterectomy that because of endometriosis that my bowel was compromised and had to be repaired. Now i've got to go through it all again and get it patched up. The success rates vary from site to site and i'm scared that if i do have the repair that months or years down the line it will need to be repaired again. I don't know if my gp will refer me, she's more like, do the exercises and have the ring. That's not a fix but a cop out. I'm frustrated and disheartened :(

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dsotm said on 30 March 2014

For years I put up with my prolapsed bowel bulging into my vaginal area. My solution was to wad up toilet paper and press it into my vaginal area to empty my bowel. . Unfortunately because of long term chronic constipation this method eventually caused my bowel to also bulge into my right buttock area.
I eventually had surgery via my vagina to strengthen and repair the weakness in the vaginal walls. My bowel no longer bulges into that area, but I now need to press against my buttock to empty my bowel. Has anyone else had this happen, and is there any way to repair this problem?

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busybeex said on 13 March 2014

please someone help me or give me advice! im 21 years old and ive had a vaginal prolapse i have two children and on the verge of slpitting up with my partner as the prolapse has affected my life really bad, im finding myself not wanting to ever go out, it is constantly on my mind and im in tears everyday i cant believe this has happened to me so young, please someone give me advice i have been to the doctors and they have referred me to gyno but im worried that their going to think im too young and the thought of living with this really scares me im having panic attacks at the thoughts of having this for another 50years or so...

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mummy home said on 25 February 2014

Hi,
Had a anterior vaginal repair last week. When I sat on the toilet I felt something pop. Last night had a quick feel and the buldge is there. I hope I have not prolapsed again

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Wellendi said on 13 January 2014

I can sympathise with Yetundi as I had a hysterctomy at the end of July 2013 for a prolapsed womb and I also had a bladder repair at the same time. I had a horrible post op infection which saw me back in hospital in October. After 4 months of resting up I was feeling much better and decided it was time to get back to "life" so started doing normal things again. Within a few weeks the old symptoms reappeared and I was back at the GP's just before Christmas 2013 with a prolapsed bowl. I'm now back on the waiting list to see the gynacologist. I waited almost a year to have the operation, then 4 months resting up afterwards so have spent 14 months hobbling arround and in discomfort. Now I'm back to hobbling around again whilst I wait to see what can be done this time around! My GP said I should not let this dictate my life but I can't stand about, walk without discomfort and sitting down often hurts. I just want my life back and to be normal again - is that really to much to ask in this day and age!

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Neens said on 05 January 2014

I had a total hysterectomy and a bladder repair in July 2012, I was 48 at the time. For anyone that is having second thoughts or worrying about the operation, please don't!! It was the best decision I ever made! The operation and recovery was totally pain free, I stayed in hospital for 2 days until my bladder decided to start working properly (apparently it can become a little bruised after surgery and is a bit slow at resuming normal wee flow!!) 18 months on and I have a totally different life. I wish I had done it years ago! For years after I had completed my family, I suffered stress incontinence, then suddenly my utreus and bladder prolapsed, it was very uncomfortable and restricted my daily activities; I was constantly looking for toilets if I went out for the day shopping and the whole experience ruined my life! I am now fully active with no problems whatsoever .

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yetundi said on 11 December 2013

I had surgery for a bladder and bowel prolapse and they gave me a hysterectomy as well, It was very painfull for a few days, this was mainly due to the wind, but i also had a lot of pain passing urine which im still suffering from 3 months on, i have had urine tests that came back negative, but im still suffering. I was also told by my surgen when i came round after the opperation tht he had only fixed my bladder prolapse and my bowel was not that bad, "not that bad, what does that mean, its bad for me, he isnt the one having to put up with it"., this was also descussed with me when i was in no frame of mind to even take the information in. So after going through all that, i still have pain and discomfort in my vagina and pain in my pelvis,a heavy feeling and pressure all the time that makes me want to wee, discomfort when i sit and when i bend over. I went to my G.P about this and asked why he had not fixed my bowel prolapse, she gave me the same answer and told me to stop worrying and not to let it take over my life, but it is taking over my life, thats why i wanted the oppperation in the first place, i just want to feel normal and not be in pain r discomfort.

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Anon29 said on 22 July 2013

HI. I'm due to go in for surgery in 3 weeks! I'm now starting to have second thoughts as to what is the best surgery for me. Stitching my uterus into place or removing it completely. I have been suffering with a prolapse from my bladder and my uterus for 5 years since I had a traumatic birth and further complications after birth. Periods are ridiculously painful and it's then that I can feel my cervix most prominently, coming out of my vagina. I would really appreciate some feedback for both surgery options as I'm really not sure what I want. I should add that I have finished my family and my partner has had a vasectomy so more children isn't an option anyway. I should also add I'm 29. Please help.

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Zara2013 said on 08 May 2013

This is a message for NOMOREFUN , i have the same problem as yours, i went to see my gp and after alot of research on the net asked her if i could have the surgery to fix the prolapse,( this was after bieng refered to a physio and bieng told the prolapse i have is normal after 3 normal births and im too young to have surgery and to just badically live with it!!)i explained to my gp that i have a pushing down feeling in my vagina when i cough sneeze or even raise my voice and if i strain on toilet ( sorry tmi) then i can feel a bulge coming out of vagina , also i have alot of flatulance in that area and i have bowel leakage aswell, my vagina is very loose and the only treament suitable to me which i read online was surgery to repair the supportive tissues, and she made it clear she wasnt happy with letting me have surgery and muttered that i want it just so i could have my vagina tightened like for cosmetic reasons! Which i wasnt happy about but she did agree to refer me to see a specialist.
I saw the specialist today and she said i have a rectocele prolapse because i have a bulge in vagina and also bowel problems , she just said to come back again for more tests. Now i dont know what treatments are available to me on the nhs for this problem i dont want to live with problem for the rest if my life its taking over my life and i feel disfigured .

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Nomorefun said on 16 March 2013

I am not yet menopausal but I think my problems arise from low oestrogen due to a prolactinoma but trying to get a doctor to say definitively is impossible. I have a moderate cystocele and mild rectocele. I went to a private womens physio because I knew the waiting list for NHS was forever (am still waiting for NHS appointment). Gyno told me my problem "wasn't that bad". I know there are women worse off than me but this is a death sentence. I can't live life as a spectator. I have had to give up all sport and exercise except swimming (which I hate). When men's bladders fall into their scrotums then they can tell us how bad it is. I never understand why men become gynos. Going to see one again next week and I don't know whether to ask for surgery or not. I was told to think about it but all I have is the internet and a load of conflicting information from physio, GP and gyno. All I know is I can't fix it, they can't fix it and the future looks very grim indeed. Fortunately sex is still good (although no sex drive due to prolactin - probably - again impossible to get a doctor to say that definitively despite all evidence suggesting it is true). Physio said my pelvic floor control is good so I don't see that exercises will improve very much for me. I only get very slight incontinence when I do things like rowing (can't do that anymore even though I loved it). So do I just live with it because surgery could make it a whole load worse? Is that not just a cop out for bad surgeons and poor hospital care? My past hospital experiences read like a nightmare of neglect. I have been extremely unlucky. Anyone else feel they have been left to make life changing decisions without all the scientific evidence that would be required to make a reasonable judgement of risk?

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jaimef said on 09 November 2012

hi had an hysterectomy approx 4 yrs ago but im having problems with my bowel and bladder at the moment im under a consultant for my bowel but after many tests ive been told I have a prolapsed bladder. Im not sure how bad I saw my consultant yesterday for bowel and i told him about my bladder he told me to go bk to gp for a referel as the pain im experiencing isn't to do with bowel and he doesnt deal with that area. im very embarrassed to go out as im experiencing lower back and abdominal pain and incontence and this isnt a little its full flow wen i laugh cough sneeze etc im 34 yrs old and wearing incontance pads. when i was in hospital for pain no one was listening to me and im so down about the problem can someone give me some advice and how they made ppl listen as im feeling fobbed off and at end of the day they dont live with it its effecting my home work and social life

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bedside light said on 21 October 2012

ok, i've been to the loo twice since my first comment and as i didn't have anything obvious in the bathroom which was penis shaped so when i sat on the loo i put two fingers inside my vagina while i did a poo. it was just marvellous how easy it was to 'go' and how quick. just one large poo and it came straight out. as i had hoped it would, my fingers strengthened the side wall of my bowel/vagina and......job done. i'm glad this is anonymous coz i know it sounds gross but honestly this has been worrying me for ages. i knew i shouldn't be constipated with the amount of fibre i eat and i'll put up with the unusual method if it means i don't have to have surgery (which doesn't seem to be very successful anyway)

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bedside light said on 17 October 2012

I've just read this NHS information because I thought I had a vaginal prolapse but I now see it's my bowel, what a relief. Have always had irregular bowel movements but in the last six months have been unable to go even when it feels urgent, without holding my prolapse in, otherwise it feels like my insides are going to drop out.
I make sure I eat well over the recommended fibre intake and drink plenty of water, am no longer overweight but expect this has happened because of long term straining to go to the loo.
Am thinking I might try puttting something penis sized into my vagina when I want to evacuate my bowel so that the natural direction is restored. Will update when I've tried this (may be a couple of days). Really don't fancy surgery

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painfulsex said on 23 September 2012

Sex since I had this op 9 weeks ago has been unbearably painful. My vaginal entrance is too tight and my vagina shortened so full penetration is not possible and is painful. I would not have had this op if I had known this could happen. I am devastated, Please think carefully before submitting to this op.

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Repeatpatient said on 14 September 2012

Well i am now 59 and I have experienced full hysterectomy and two prolapse ops over years fro 1999 to this week when I have had a rectocele op. all of these were in merseyside and Manchester and all of them absolutely fine. This week I was amazed at the care cleanliness and consideration. Lots and lots of repeat questions yes but I know this to ensure the right treatment for the right patient at a time when each hospital is dealing with thousands and thousand of patients. I am now at home the day after op and feel I could do anything ( I won't because I know I need to heal but I feel good and am sure I will be back at work in a month max)
Having said that I think I'm a pretty good patient .... Don't smoke not overweight and generally good health.

My GP and initial consultants were happy to advise me re waiting or proceeding now with the recent surgery once i had ben honest and described symptoms re trying to get all out of bowel etc but once I did they were happy to proceed.

Would recommend to anyone not to fear and go ahead if you need it . It was all over before I even knew and after an hour or two I was eating toast and drinking tea!

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sandyann said on 25 July 2012

dotysussex i had both bowel and bladder prolapse and had surgery on the 19th less then a week ago. Im only 30 and was told i was to young but they agreed to it. At the moment have a cathetor as i went to retention which should hopefully be removed tomorrow. I am also now constipated and wishing i didnt have this surgery as i feel absolutely rubbish. I hoping long term it will be worth it but everyone is different if the problem is really affecting your life like it was me then having surgery is prob worth it.
is there anyone else who has had the surgery to give me advice on recovery and feeling normal again?

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dotysussex said on 17 July 2012

dotysussex , is there anyone out there who has had a rectocele operation, ie. ( problems with emptying the bowel and having to push the prolapse up to evacuate the bowel fully) I have got to decide yes or no to this op.

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Zara18 said on 21 June 2012

I am only 34 and have been battling for treatment for a prolapse, rectocele and cystocele for the last 3 years. I am due to go into hospital for an operation in two weeks and am worried about it considerable but can't continue like this. The surgeon has said that 'I can come back and have further treatment if this doesn't fix it' but I don't think they realise how much organisation it has taken to arrange the amount of time that I'll have to have off work not to mention looking after my children. I just want it all done now so that I can recover and them maybe get some normality in my life. Not to mention the amount of money it will cost to do a better repair when this one fails. It beggers belief that in this day and age women still have to suffer with something that should be able to be rectified simply. However, saying that I am grateful that I seem to be finally moving forward with this. Fingers crossed for the future (rather than my legs!).

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Zara18 said on 21 June 2012

I am only 34 and have been battling for treatment for a prolapse, rectocele and cystocele for the last 3 years. I am due to go into hospital for an operation in two weeks and am worried about it considerable but can't continue like this. The surgeon has said that 'I can come back and have further treatment if this doesn't fix it' but I don't think they realise how much organisation it has taken to arrange the amount of time that I'll have to have off work not to mention looking after my children. I just want it all done now so that I can recover and them maybe get some normality in my life. Not to mention the amount of money it will cost to do a better repair when this one fails. It beggers belief that in this day and age women still have to suffer with something that should be able to be rectified simply. However, saying that I am grateful that I seem to be finally moving forward with this. Fingers crossed for the future (rather than my legs!).

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Frontsister said on 13 April 2012

I'm a nurse - I also have a prolapse that results in me being incontinent so I wear pads. I am also menopausal and have the mirena coil ( small element of HRT). I have tried pelvic floor exercises to no avail. Whilst I can feel my cervix at the entrance to my vagina, it does not protude at this time. However, I also have Stage 1 cell changes of my cervix which are being monitored. I feel sorry for the gynaegologist as she cannot use the speculum without padding out my vaginal walls with sterile gloves as they also tend to prolapse. With so many more life threatening health issues - this aspect takes a back seat. Its not life threatening - just a damn nusiance. I am contemplating surgery - but I know I will have to convince my GP ( who is a really good GP), that this is the best way to deal with my condition. Does it affect my sex life - sure it does - its now a distant memory! Not that I wanted it to be that way - buy men generally don't understand how it affect us. If it were a prostate there are easily accessible options. WE need someone to pioneer this cause - who has the clout to carry this forward. In the meantime, I cross my legs every time I sneeze - keep it real ladies!

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Windsurfer101 said on 12 October 2011

I am one of those post menopausal very active (do triathlon training) women (age 58) doing a job that requires significant travel in Europe and also around the world (I fly somewhere 2 -3 times a month) who has a uterus prolapse and am devastated. I avoided HRT, did not need it. Now I really do not know what to do. I am slightly concerned that perhaps the merina coil which was removed a year ago had something to do with it. I really do not want surgery, one reason the disruption that it would cause but also seeing the complications. I have never been really ill in my life. I am trying pelvic floor exercises with a Kegel 8 machine as well as other exercises. I am not really much overweight. Reading all this makes me even more concerned. I wish someone had told me that there might be a risk and perhaps I would have considered HRT although I have safety concerns about it. I really do not know what to do!!

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Tottins said on 13 July 2011

Nowhere on the NHS choices medical conditions pages can I find the problem experienced by many women with prolapse with a rectocele - that of being unable to evacuate the rectum / bowel voluntarily, and having to do it manually. No advice is offered for this. Eating fruit, yoghurt and linseeds help somewhat, but not completely. It is not a matter of diet entirely, it is also due to things being misshapen, out of place and under pressure down below. Also the exit is no longer opposite the push, and when you push, nothing happens. This is not addressed anywhere.
Re HRT. If you have fibroids, you cannot take HRT, as this grows them. What choices are left?

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Angela32 said on 16 April 2011

I am a carer and I had an bladder neck repair for stress incontinence... I was told I had a small prolapse but they did not repair at the time as not necessary 5 months later and I now have a prolapse which is causing soreness and occasional pain and which I have to push back manually... I am menopausal and taking HRT vaginal pessaries (which is part of the treatment for prolapse) but now have been told that I could have a prolapse repair. I am now aware that this can be a problem with bladder repairs and post hysterectomy which I had done in 92.. At no time was I alerted to these facts...

It seems a total waste of NHS money to now put me through further surgery when I could have had both done last year...

I now have to arrange long term care and help again for post op recovery after the surgery and if I don't have it I will have to put up with the soreness and discomfort until I do....

Please GP and NHS services provide better information and joined up thinking when reviewing patients with these types of problems.

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confused one said on 26 February 2011

So much confilcting advice regarding treatment options. The side effects from treatment seem to cause more problems than they cure. Very scary to have this problem not knowing how best to proceed.

There must be more emphasis on educating young women particularly during pregnancy of the implications of lifiting and more information about ways to prevent this horrible problem that seems all so common.

Surely it can't be beyond the skill of surgeons to come up with some way of repairing the damage without all the horrific side effects and possibly a future of further regular surgery.

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Tottins said on 18 February 2011

This is a neglected area of medicine, with no satisfactory long term solution. Remedies for prolapse are in the Stone Age. Women are given no advice on how to manage this at work - re sitting, standing and lifting etc, and if they have to resort to self-emptying of bowel (if they have rectocele), how are they supposed to cope at work or going out? The operations often need repeating and the risk of side effects (further impairing sexual and excretory functions) make it not worth the risk. GPs are complacent and down-play prolapse, and are reluctant to issue sickness certificates. Why? Is it just another women's pain thing that we just have to cope with? We are left in limbo. Something that cause us major everyday problems but is underplayed and neglected by medicine.
So many times I read "it is often painless ..." I cannot understand this (who writes this stuff?) when I am unable to sit without discomfort and pain.

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Triandafilla said on 08 February 2011

What is worrying is the fact that when women start to go through the menopause there is not enough guidance apart from helping with HRT if suitable and how to cope with hot flushes. The concern is that the awareness lacking to advise women of longer term health issues through having a prolapse of some sort and preventative advise for not lifting heavy items is one of them. There are operations with difference procedures and yet non of these can guarantee a successful outcome after surgery and in fact many women have suffered far more with other complications especially when mesh is used to suspend the prolapse. I really do think women who are fit, keep active all of a sudden they discover a prolapse that is heartbreaking to say the least for I do not think there is a long term solution. Awareness for prolapse it is not being taught nor do the GP's make time to warn women the dangers and possible issues after menopause.

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