pelvic prolapse

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I've been dealing with prolapse for years but has recently gotten worse and prolapse is out!  Went to a uro gyn this week and am thinking about having surgery.  Have tried a pessary and had no luck with it.  But I am scared of surgery.  Don't want to end up being worse off.  Also don't like the idea of a sling.  Dr. told me the sling was better for long term. She gave me information on both kinds of surgery (using the sling and tissue) to hold everything back up.  Don't know what to do can anyone help?  Probably wait till first of year for insurance purposes.

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  • Posted

    Karen, if you are someone who likes to read medical articles to find out as much as you can, I reccommend this review article that came out this year.  It is basically a urogyn looking at studies on mesh and reviewing the mesh situation as a whole.  He gives a lot of information and I found it to be very helpful.  

    This is a link to the complete article: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4386830/

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    • Posted

      They kept the aspect of sexual activity quiet, didn't they!  I'd not heard that mentioned anywhere before.  Interesting about having more than one prolapse leading to higher likelihood of failure too, as well as previous surgeries.  Makes me think I won't be offered more surgery now that all three areas are prolapsed!  Everywhere I've seen pessaries mentioned it says about estrogen being used, but having had a hysterectomy for endometrial cancer last November, then estrogen wouldn't be advisable, so I wonder where that will lead too.
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    • Posted

      Thanks Dorry I just finished reading the medical article you sent.  Wow makes it sound even worse......Going to have to think about it more.

       

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  • Posted

    Karen, this is not a criticism if you hadn't been doing it, but had you been doing pelvic floor exercises after you got your prolapse originally?  I'm asking to really know how effective they can be.  I'm doing them like mad to try and stop mine getting worse - it's livable with while it's like it is.  I had an anterior repair last November and it's failed already, but I don't want to put people off - it may be relevant that I have a connective tissue disease, so that may have made all the difference.  The actual repair itself was nothing but delight at the time.  I got up and walked the next morning, to the loo, and it was bliss, with the prolapse not being there!  And I never got pain from it at all.  It was done at the same time as a hysterectomy.  I DID get a bladder infection that knocked me out until the antibiotics kicked in, but that was the worse of it really.  Just a shame it didn't last, and researching recently, there is a fairly high failure rate.  I wouldn't be afraid of the surgery though and if it works for you for any length of time, it's good.  I understand different repairs have different pain aspects though and you haven't said what bit of you has prolapsed.  Reading on here, the bowel prolapse sounds much more painful when that's repaired, for instance.  But you're doing the right thing - look into your options, and read as much as you can about others' experiences and that all helps you make an informed decision. 
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  • Posted

    Karen I agree with Chris regarding the pelvic floor exercises but unfortunately so many women do them wrong. It is important if you can to see a specially trained physiotherapist who specialises in pelvic floor. I gather from your post you're probably not in the UK which is a shame because more and more Urogynaecologists have theses physiotherapists working alongside them. It's something worth looking into.
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    • Posted

      I was unfortunate.  The day I came out after the hysterectomy I should have seen the specialist physio but she was away on a course and emailed me instructions to 'do pelvic floor exercises' which really left me all at sea!  I had no idea when to start them or the information I should have had.  Having said that, the info that I've picked up from this group I'm sure has helped and I think I was doing it very sloppily before, thinking a 'clench was a clench' but reading about doing it in three stages made me aware that when I thought I was fully clenching, there was more to go!  I can feel the prolapse move up VERY slightly when I tighten the muscle now but the thing I hadn't realised at all was the importance of holding that muscle when coughing or sneezing or lifting etc.  I'd NO idea about that, and had the flu, with cough, a month after the hysterectomy and prolapse repair, so if they'd told me about that it might have made a difference!
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    • Posted

      Matron & Chris,  Yes Dr. mentioned exercises even years ago but described at as "stopping the urine flow" and pulling the muscles up.  At this point where I am now I don't think it will do a lot of good.  I am in USA
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    • Posted

      It's very hard to know at what point you're flogging a dead horse with the pelvic floor exercises, isn't it!  She says, doing them SO many times a day, in desperation!
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  • Posted

    Hello Karen.

    I will private message you with my web site so you can read about my prolapse and have a look at my support garment so you can decide if this is something that you feel may work for you too. Blessings to you and keep smiling. Its not as bad as it seems once you have good support.

                                 Blessings to you

                                 Lynn

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    • Posted

      Ah, I didn't know you were a nurse Matron (perhaps should have guessed:-) ).  Having read everything so far I'm feeling my options are limited.  I'm still waiting for my appointment with the specialist, but firstly, wonder if I'll be expected to make a decision there and then?  If so, I want to be prepared.  So do you mind me sounding you out?  I'm thinking, because I have the three prolapsed areas (front back and top) and the last repair only lasted about 8 months, and the Ehlers Danlos thing, I'm a poor candidate for surgery, unless it's shortening the vagina considerably, to under the prolapse.  Because of the endometrial cancer, estrogen wouldn't be possible to use and it didn't work anyway with the pessary I had for years.   Because there is atrophy then how likely is it there won't be problems with a pessary?  (the doctor who found the prolapses did ask if I wanted one again, so maybe that's a possibility?) I'm thinking this might work on a short term basis if I'm offered it?  OR, with enough pelvic floor exercises, might that stop it getting worse, so although it's a bit uncomfortable when I bend over or do anything like that, I can cope if it doesn't get worse.  What's the chance of pelvic floor exercises improving the anterior prolapse?  I understand pelvic floor exercises can't help a vaginal vault prolapse though?  IF I was offered the rather extreme option of shortening the vagina, then is there a high chance of bladder and bowel problems, which I don't have at the moment?  You can see I'm in somewhat of a dillema.  The anterior prolapse (the worst one) at the moment can be felt as a bulge above the vulva.  Thank you so much for any advice you can offer!
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    • Posted

      Matron, I have to admit I didn't think Lynn was posting as a nurse, but did find her suggestion of the support garment interesting.  My prolapse isn't severe enough to benefit from anything like that, so it wouldn't apply to me, but I think it was a useful idea and anyone handy with a needle and cotton could actually make it themselves pretty easily.  It might give someone another option which is always useful and rather reassuring.  I do understand you needing to clarify this though, so please don't think I'm criticising you for bringing the subject up.  When I reply to posts I do try to slip in frequently that I'm not a doctor because I wouldn't want anyone to take any advice I can offer in the same way they would from someone who is a qualified medic!

      Going on to Vitamin E - I was reading somewhere that someone was overdosed with it because of using it to help a prolapse but I've no idea what dose they were using and how often, and was slightly surprised that this was even possible, or would they have been making it up?

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    • Posted

      Hi Chris

           I have never heard of anyone overdosing on applying vitimin E externally to their insides of their vagina area. Now if they were taking it by mouth, that would be different. I always suggest just breaking open two capsuls of Vitimin E, natural vitimin E and applying it. 

                                   Blessings to you

                                   Lynn

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    • Posted

      Lynn I found it on a site the other day.  As I said, I don't know how reliable it was- it comes back to the thing that anyone can say anything on the internet, but I know that you can overdose Vt E by mouth and wondered if because it's being absorbed directly into the vagina if that makes it more likely BUT there was no mention of what strength they were using and how often!  It was just something I read and wondered if it was even possible.  So it was a question more than a statement:-)
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    • Posted

      The only way I can find out is to ask my doctor about that one is to ask my pharmacist Chris. Pharmacists know a lot more about medications then even doctors. Thats because they have so many types of medications to deal with and presciptions etc. I wil ask the pharmacist as well as my doctor to find out about what you have seen on the internet. It would be good to see what the results are regarding people who have said they have overdosed by using Vitimin E externally. Glad you pointed it out as we can never have too much information.

                                                     Blessings to you

                                                     Lynn

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    • Posted

      Lynn I did just look it up online again and I got the impression you'd have to use an awful lot of it if it was even then possible to overdose.  There are SO many sites suggesting use of it in that way.  I think it was a red herring, so to speak:-)
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    • Posted

      We never know do we Chris what to believe or not believe sometimes when we read some of the comments on the internet. I did read that Vitimin E when applied to the outer skin does promote elastin and collagen. So maybe thats why it helps moisturize the vagina area inside to heal it. I only use two capsuls before bed, by sticking a pin in one end and squeezing out the gel to apply inside. I never have anymore dryness and no more bleedings or chafing up inside since I have been doing this. I will still check with my doctor and pharmacists to see what they say about any overdosing from applying too much Vitimin E externally. Thanks again for pointing it out.

                                          Blessings to you

                                          Lynn

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    • Posted

      Hello chris. Firstly you would not be expected to make any decisions at your appointment. Good practice now which all surgeons/medical professionals are supposed to abide by is to give as much written and verbal information at the appointment. It's very difficult to make a decision sometimes because after all this is major surgery and in your case you have other medical problems to contend with. Obviously you'll take that information away for you to decide what you want. Many Urogynaecologists now have a team that includes specialist nurses and physiotherapists and you asking to see them can help you form a decision. That has been my role and if the nurses work the same as me I ensure I'm available to answer any questions. You asked about a pessary. You're right when you say the vaginal atrophy may cause problems but pessaries are being improved all the time so I would look into that if it could help. I would also ask to see a physiotherapist who is specially trained in pelvic floor problems. They use equipment now to make sure you're doing the exercises correctly. Done correctly they can improve your anterior prolapse. You asked about how shortening the vagina could affect your bowel and bladder. That's hard for me to answer. Only a doctor examining you can answer that really because everyone is different anatomically. I hope this helps a little chris.
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    • Posted

      I'm wondering now Lynn if I'd be better with the Vitamin E than the hayaluronic acid pessaries that I've been using for about 8 months.  Will have to think about that - again, it's that feeling of trying to do the best for ourselves and making decisions:-)
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    • Posted

      THANK YOU MATRON!  That is such a huge help that it's brought tears to my eyes!  I feel you've given me a plan - and knowing I won't be put on the spot to decide helps hugely!  There are so many things there that are positive and my husband is also saying thank you!
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    • Posted

      Chris, I am all for natural remedies and I have lived that way all my life. In fact when I had 7 hours of brain surgery, they said they couldn't believe afterward that I refused pain killers. I did this because I wanted to recover by knowing what my true pain level really was. Of course if I was in horrible pain, I would have to take something. However, I did not have to take one pain killer which really made me happy.

      I have suggested Vitimin E to a few ladies on this forum who are also using it and finding it very helpful and soothing. I am not sure what you should do, but thats up to you if you want to try or not try. Just make sure you are not allergic to Vitimin E and then you are okay to try if you choose to do so.

                        Blessings to you

                        Lynn

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    • Posted

      Lynn if we all took the pain killers we were prescribed we'd be dosed up to the eyeballs.  I try and avoid medication unless I really need it.  Too many times I've been dosed up with stuff only to find out later that the side effects were far worse than the condition in the first place, so I don't blame you at all.  Yes, I think the Vit E is worth a try at some time.  I've got a fair few huyalorinic pessaries left, and also some liquid but I will try it at some point.
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