Rectocele recovery

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Hi, I had a rectocele repair  only 16 days ago and wondered if people could share how I should feel by now. I have four kids and am on my feet a lot probably more than I should be. I am taking movicol and that works as well as pretending to blow bubbles to get my bowl moving - all works. I am worried my vagina is going to be really tight after this. Does this happen. I also have what feels like a row of scar tissue between my front and back passage. I guess where skin was somehow folded in...? I am feeling miserable but not in horrendous pain. I picked my one and a half year old up a couple of times by mistake recently and didn't feel too bad. I am mostly worried about whether my stitches have burst - no idea but no blood. Also how do you know if you have an infection. I have yellowish discharge but no real bleeding. Any ideas of what I should expect ...especially sex after this - is it going to hurt/be too tight?

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135 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi, the row of stitches freaked me out but I can assurr you 8wks on I am smooth no obvious scar tissue.

    I have 3 kids and was on my feet quicker than I should have been I have been very carefull not to lift anything and been doing pelvic floors since week 2

    I had a feel about wk 4 and thought they had ckosed me up! But it was still swollen,

    I am tighter now but its still in working order wink

    I had a lot of orange dishcharge which was apparently my body reacting to the stitches inside dissolving

  • Posted

    Hi Kathryn. I'm 10 days post this procedure. I'm feeling much better (although like you said, going to the toilet isn't great fun). I'm fully mobile and driving again. 

    I don't think you could burst your stitches as they are one continuous stitch inside your vagina (I work in gynae and obstetrics) so if you 'broke' one, it would all go and it's really unlikely, because they're sturdily set in there. However by this stage your perineal stitches - if you had any - should have dessolved because they are thinner.

    In regards to the discharge, it's normal to have discharge, perhaps it is yellow because it is slightly blood tinged? If it smells offensive, or is more gloopy/sticky than your normal discharge, Id see your Gp. If you are very worried about the stitches, I'd go to the Gp about that too

    The scar tissue you're feeling may actually be the stitches, which are - for want of a better way to describe - like a zipper, a strip, running the length of your vagina, and if you're not taking it easy, it's probably still swollen and that may be what you're feeling. 

    As with sex, I don't know! I haven't got there personally, but I'm nervous too. I've felt myself and it is a lot smaller, but obviously it's still swollen. We'll see. Hope your pain improves xx

    • Posted


      thanks for the info. I was really worried as I pulled what I thought was a stuck pube perhaps in the area where the stitches were, then wondered if it was in fact a stitch! If it is like one long stitch then I feel better now as I can't see any more. I had a feel which perhaps I shouldn't and one finger seemed tight. Got me really freaked out but I imagine the surgeon knew what he was doing. I am driving and walking around like normal to be honest which is probably too much. if you work in gynae when can I get back to say long walks and running.

      I had a total meltdown earlier, crying in front of the kids as I don't think they or my husband appreciate how I feel. I have tried to explain to the kids that I don't feel great, and perhaps could they like stop fighting etc, but i guess they are just kids...4 sons has done for me!! LOL feeling better now

    • Posted

      6-8 weeks is the usual recovery time, but it depends on each person, of course, I'd maybe try and build it up bit by bit and see how you go?

      Such a shame they don't understand, I'm sorry! It must be tough. You've made it 16 days, you're getting there!!!

      the stitches are a bit thicker than your hairs, but you will only have a couple of knots (if you haven't had the perineal repair also, if you have, there will be more) and they will be inside the vagina. 

      I know it sounds strange, but why not look? But remember when you do that it's not the finished article yet! Then you might be able to see where the stitch knot(s) are?

      The swelling and tightness again depends on each person. I'm even unsure about mine! I knew my consultant well and he said there was a 'big difference' before and after, but I can't be sure!

    • Posted

      Hello, I know this is an old post, but I had hysterectomy and rectocele repair done five weeks ago. I’m just looking for ladies to tell me how they are doing long term??? I’d appreciate hearing from you and others. 
    • Posted

      Hi!  I know this post was from 3 years ago mentioned that the stitches are secure in there!!!  I hope so b/c I had to pick up my 18 pound dog this am before she escaped my yard!  I am 10 days post rectocele repair and freaking out I could have hurt the repair. I feel FINE didn’t feel any rips or anything but then again I cant see in there. 

      Any thoughts or encouragement??  

      Thank you!!


  • Posted

    The yellow discharge is normal. Try not to pick up the baby, sit down and have her or him climb on your lap. Sixteen days is still so early, really try not to stand for too long. Let some things go. It is really important for you to try to put yourself first now, so you do not have a problem with it later. I can not imagine having to have it done again to repair something! I am just past 7 weeks out and finally this last week, I am feeling back to normal. 

    At that time and for several weeks after I had swelling where the stitches were between the front and back. it has gone down now. I had sex for the first time since the surgery, and I could start singing a Madonna song... It was tight, but doable. My Partner was worried at first, but he liked the results. wink

    Having a bowel movement was much easier after I read on one of these discussions to put your feet on a small stool. I also used miralax every other day. I still use it every now and then.

    Good luck with your recovery and Take it easy! I am older and my kids are on their own, I cannot imagine taking care of small children during recovery.Really can't stress enough to put yourself first, get some help from your family. Leave things for your husband to take care of. 

    • Posted

      Hi all,

      I had this surgery and a hysterectomy at the same time both hurt, I forfot and picked up my one yr old grandson a few times I'm sore but don't think anything burst. Now I'm worried I'm only 7 days post op. I do a lot of weight lifting with excercise so prob. Didn't affect it too much. Thanks for your post very helpful


    • Posted

      How are you doing now? I’m looking to hear from ladies that had rectocele surgery a while ago. Im wondering about long term???? 
  • Posted

    Hello Kathryn, OMG, only 16/17 days post op and you're doing far too much!!!! Have you got someone there to look after you? There is no way you should be doing what you are doing. Please, please, you have to take things easy otherwise all the things you are scared of happening, will happen. Gravity pushes everything south and all the time you are on your feet, doing chores, picking up anything heavier than a kettle of water is dangerous. You will still be very swollen and tender for a while, so your body has to be given time to heal and adjust to the changes. The way you look after yourself now is crucial and could affect you later. You should not be doing anything more than a short walk around the house for the first six weeks, increasing the distance a little at a time, then at say ten weeks you should be able to do light housework. Even then, don't get overtired and sit with feet up as soon as you ache down below, Sex can be resumed at around 8-10 weeks or even longer it depends how you feel. If you do as you are told and take things easy, have help with the house and children you will find you will heal better and the swelling reduce quicker. I had help for 8 weeks and after that I was able to do most things but in moderation. I felt really guilty but I rested an awful lot but it's paid off, as now, 14 months down the line life is blooming fantastic. I feel back to how I felt in my twenties even though I am 70 (a young and active one I should add) and sex is fantastic with no problems at all.

    You will feel all those stitches underneath by the way and it is where the skin is folded. I had the same. Everything will reduce with time and rest. I had a yellowish discharge too which eventually cleared up when the stitches had gone. Try not to rely on laxatives for too long. Eat fruit such as clementines, oranges summer fruits with yoghurt, apples, pears, prunes etc and eat a high fibre diet. Drink lots of fluids too of course. As for your vagina ending up being too tight; well I doubt it. You can't tell yet anyway so stop worrying. If you take it easy when the time comes and you use plenty of lubricant in the beginning such as Sensilube or Sylk from Boots all will be well believe me. So Kathryn, look after yourself, take it easy and rest, rest, rest that's the best advice I can give. Enjoy your Christmas and try not to worry but should you want to ask any more questions, there's lots of friends on this Forum who can help. Best wishes, LadyPink

    • Posted

      Hello Pink Lady,

      Thank you sooo much for your post!!! It is very helpful. I have just had my rectocele this morning!!! I am very concerned about the first bowel movement. Can you remember when you had yours?? I love your suggestion of the fruita and yogurt!! I do plan on giving my body time to heal and heal correctly. Again thank you for being so open and sharing!!!


    • Posted

      Hi CoachSonya. I'm just 4 weeks post op for rectocele, and slight cycstocele. I have been doing a little more than LadyPink has suggested, but think everything is going ok. It's very difficult to stop doing things when you start to feel a bit better. My first BM was 3 days after the op. Make sure as stated you drink plenty of fluids, and light meals until you go! I've carried on with a balanced diet the majority of the time, fluids and one movicol a day. So far so good. Just remember no straining, gentle breathing and if you can raise your feet slightly so your knees are just above hip level, that is a better position for ease. Hope your pain isn't too bad. X

    • Posted

      Hi there, I know its a while since you posted about your rectocele but I am due to go in in ,in a week or so, I am of the older persuasion too, 71 yrs, but also have a sex life and play golf. The op itself doesn't worry me too much but the recovery does. One thing I haven't read is whether there are external stitches , abdomen, or is it done vaginally or keyhole? I will follow your advice and be extra careful about resting. Thanks


    • Posted

      Short walks around the house for 6 weeks? That’s not what my surgeon told me at all. I am 19 days rectocele repair and bladder sling. I have been walking as I please as soon as the pain subsided. I will say I am very swollen but I have no other person to help but myself.

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