Pelvic Organ Prolapse

Posted , 27 users are following.

I do wish this subject wasn't so unheard of as it is soo common and yet this forum has only a minimal amount of posts. I think we as women feel so distressed and alone with this that it is not talked about. I discovered my prolapsing uterus about 6 months ago and now my bladder has also prolapsed and I am sure my bowel is not far behind. This is a horrible situation. I was examined lying down both by my doctor and by a gyno and both times was told I had no prolapse. However when standing up everything drops!

I am truly depressed and horrified by everything that is happening to my body and do not know what to do. I just wish I knew somebody personally who had this that I could talk with.

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33 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Soph...I fully understand your distress, having been there myself.

    It takes an examination under anaesthetic for the true degree of my prolapses to show. I have now had three repair ops and each time it took a while before the doctors and consultants were convinced. The consultant examined me lying on my side and then upright and was still not convinced,but it all showed up in theatre.

    It is very frustrating, but you do have to keep going back. It might be worth seeing a gynaecologist privately who specialises in pelvic floor surgery.

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    • Posted

      Hi ladies, its strange that just by knowing I'm not alone in my problem really helps. In 2014 I had rectocele repair which seemed fine but now I have another prolapses, but my gynaecologist says he can't feel it, but its there when I stand, it aches & stops me living a normal life, I can't walk to shops, enjoy my grandchildren, I am an active lady of 62, I work full time as I live alone & I am so miserable over this, I get pains in my stomach low down & my vagina is so low it rub's on my underwear. I'm seeing Gp tomorrow & going to suggest being fitted with a pessery ring, does anyone know if they work. I'm so depressed & at wits end with this now girls. God bless.

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    • Posted

      I had the surgery two years ago and it didn't even last 2 months and I have felt tired ever since.  A hysterectomy was suggested to me but I am having the DR who did my cystocele 9 years ago do the uterus prolapse and hope for the best.  The Dr who did the surgery that did not last suggested a pessary but I heard it can cause infections and must be taken out and cleaned and I am always prone to infections so I decided against it.

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  • Posted

    Wow Scriv, 3 ops!

    That's what worries me about this - there is no lifetime cure and I find that thought sooo depressing which is why I am so upset at the moment. I don't know how to live with these symptoms which have worsened over the last few days to a degree that I don't want to leave the house.

    Some women get 15-20 years of relief but I rarely read those stories, just the ones where ladies are having the surgery over and over again.

    I really am having a hard time coping at the moment and I have two small children to contend with as well.

    If I was asymptomatic then I would live with it but these feelings are horrible!

    Have you had the same repairs done each time or for something different?

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  • Posted

    I can reassure you that I did have 17 years between the first prolapse and needing the second repair.

    I then had a hysterectomy and anterior repair as the uterus was on its way down. The back then appeared to be well supported, but then a rectocele appeared and needed repairing two years later.

    You can't go on as you describe, Soph. If you have it repaired and keep up your pelvic floor exercises - yes, I know it's a pain, but they do help - and try to avoid really heavy lifting as much as you can, the chances are good for a good many years.

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  • Posted

    I appreciate your reponses. Thank you.

    I do seem to have everthing descending at once and feel it would be major surgery which scares the hell out of me. Not to mention it will put me out of action and I need to be able to look after my kids as they are young.

    I will have to take it one day at a time for now and see how long I can cope. It is hard though and I have spent pretty much all day in tears over this.

    Thank you again.

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  • Posted

    It might help you to know that I had my first surgery when my kids were small too. Everything was descending all at once then following childbirth and I came to the point when I just had to get something done as it was interfering with every day life big time.

    I decided to go for surgery i.e. with three months drastically out of action rather than the every day misery which was wearing me and my family down, day in day out. I have never regretted it. After three months, I was more or less back to normal and was able to get back to the normal very hectic life of a parent with young kids. And the repair held good for 17 years. Having this done when you are youngish, means your tissues and muscles are likely to be in a good condition. They are just damaged.

    My operation and recovery were very smooth and planning around it is easier than you think. You are not allowed to drive or lift anything heavier than a kettle for 6 weeks, but you can work around it. You also call in family and friends to help - they are ususally so willing to - and if you can afford it, paying someone to vac and do the bathrooms once a week helps enormously. For the next 6 weeks, you get back to normal gradually. I found this preferable to a lifetime of misery.

    Fears about surgery are also very normal,for one thing it is fear of the unknown, but the nurses and doctors are usually so lovely and reassure you.

    But first things first... your doctors have yet to assess your prolapse and then will probably prescribe physio if they haven't already. You will then be able to see if things are getting better or worsening...and then the decision will be made easier. As I said, I came come to a point when I knew I just have to have the surgery as I could no longer walk around like that and quality of life was zilch.

    Good luck in your decision...but whichever route you choose, you need to have another chat with your doctor/gynae to tell them just how much this is affecting you.

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  • Posted

    I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to tell me your story.

    I think for the moment the symptoms are more severe than the prolapse themselves. It does affect my everyday life and I am very aware of down there! Nothing has fallen as yet but my uterus has dropped as it was never there before and the front wall is bulging and saggy. I believe they would only see this as mild prolapse and wouldn't advocate surgery at this time anyway although I have to say it feels much more severe than that. I went from no symptoms to being plagued by symptoms in the last 2 months.

    I will probably have to go back to my doctor and ask for a PT for now.

    I am completely shocked that this has happened and never even knew it existed until it happened. I feel completely disfigured.

    I take it you just had everything stitched back together? I think when the time comes I will have to have my uterus lifted as well.

    I just wish we as women were better informed as this is much more common that we are lead to believe but we are made to feel like we are alone and freakish. Katie Price mentioned when she was pregnant with Princess that she wanted some work done not for vanity reasons but because she knew something was wrong. If you google it you will come across headlines such as Jordan is a loosey goosey which absolutely infuriates me. This is not something we had happen to us by choice and it is distressing enough without that crap obviously written by a man!

    I am not handling all this very well at the moment and feel like an emotional wreck but again thank you for taking the time to talk to me.

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  • Posted

    Hi again...

    Yes, the first time, they lifted everything up and kept the uterus. My gynae has told me that the uterus can be used to support the other organs and they only like to remove it if it is too low and/or causing a problem in itself - which is what happened the second time with me.

    It is worth bearing in mind that with some ladies - like me - the symptoms are often much worse than the degree of prolapse which can be measured and diagnosed. As I said before, my complaints never matched the clinical findings and I was always a puzzle until they actually got there under aneasthetic. In every case, the consultant acknowledged this when he could see what was what.

    That is why if the symptoms continue to cause you anguish, you have to keep on, as you might be one of those ladies too.

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  • Posted

    Scriv, did you have a gynae do your repairs or a uro-gyn? I keep reading and hearing from others about using a uro-gyn as they are the experts in prolapse surgery but I am being referred to a gynae. Just wondered. I am really stressing about the surgery.


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  • Posted

    I know this is an old thread, but it seems sensible to add to it rather than start a new one, as I would probably be giving it the exact same title.

    I find myself in a bit of a difficult situation. I've had far too much gynae work done already - colposuspension about 14 years ago now, for stress incontinence, worked brilliantly - then two vaginal repairs for prolapse a couple of years later, these were just six months apart because it all fell straight down again - then 6 months after that, yet another repair, together with a vaginal hysterectomy because it all fell down yet again, and this time round I had uterine prolapse as well.

    After that I had a gut obstruction caused by adhesions from all this messing around - and more surgery to deal with that. Then to top it all off, surgery to deal with a Bartholins cyst. So that's 6 lots of surgery so far.

    Right now, I know I've got another prolapse. The vagina seems to have fallen down and feels like it is about 1\" or 2\" at the most. I have a rectocele again - I'm having a lot of problems emptying my bowels. I'm also having problems passing water, and this is worrying me as I was told when they did the colposuspension that the suture supporting the bladder was attached to the outside wall of the vagina - which has now fallen down, of course.

    I'm in a fair bit of discomfort, with low back ache and some sharp abdominal pain, plus assorted leaking and unpleasantness.

    I went to my GP who did not examine me (rather surprised about that actually ) and said that he did not know whether anything could be done about all this - and that really did worry me. I am waiting for a gynae referral now, I've got an appointment at the end of March, which seems a very long way away right now.

    So my question is - has anyone any experience of such a situation? I will admit I am more than a little worried about my GP's comment that he did not know whether anything could be done.

    I do hope that someone has some input here!

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  • Posted

    Just a bit of an update.

    I had some piles banded three weeks ago, and that's definitely helped to a degree - the doctor said they were 'very large prolapsing piles'. They do still seem to be prolapsing - basically it feels as if anything that could possibly fall down/out is trying to do just that! - but something has changed and it is a bit easier to empty my bowels than it was before. Still have to 'support', but it is easier than it was.

    The colo-rectal surgeon who did the banding was also very reassuring about the other prolapses, he said that they could all be dealt with and wouldn't present any problems. I was very relieved indeed to hear that!

    However, I've now developed an infection of some sort. My GP says it is probably prolapse-related, and probably in my bladder,. The kidneys are now giving me a fair bit of discomfort as well. Still got a couple of days to go with the antibiotics, though.

    I initially thought that the nasty lower abdominal pain and high fever must be something to do with the banding so I rang the ward where it was done - they said call GP immediately, so I did, and I was seen literally within 30 minutes of my phone call.

    Pretty good service there really, in fact hard to see how it could be better.

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  • Posted

    I've finally had my gynae referral, and to be honest I'm not very happy this evening. I saw the registrar, who then called in the consultant, who said it was 'complicated' and a 'challenging problem'. He wants another opinion, but has told me that 'sometimes the best thing to do is nothing at all'.

    I was not looking forward to the prospect of more surgery, but I find that the prospect of not having any of this fixed - or at least improved - is even less appealing.

    And to top it off, I believe that I now have a hernia in the diagonal crease at the top of my right leg, and possibly one on the left as well.

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  • Posted

    Regarding prolapse of the uterus, I saw on TV last week 3 items that can be placed inside of the vagina and which would exercise the pelvic floor. My question is, if the uterus is so far down that it can be seen, would these appliances do more harm than good. I do hope that someone saw this programme and would be able to advise me or anyone else in this position. I am not sure how this forum works and if I am replying to the person or persons that first posed the question.
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  • Posted

    I didn't see this programme, but I've been in this situation in the past, and I've tried various exerciser things - some work better than others, and they can be a real help.

    Whether or not your prolapse can be helped by exercising will depend on the degree of prolapse, and also the cause. If the cervix can be seen actually outside the body then of course it won't be possible to use these exercisers at all - but you'll have realised that.

    I do suggest that you consult your doctor. You'll get informed advice, and surgery is definitely not the first option that will be considered.

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