What symptoms did your rectocele surgery fix?

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Hi Ladies,

If you have had a posterior repair for a rectocele, can you tell me what symptoms were improved (or disappeared) because of the repair?

Also, if you had back pain that seemed to be related to the rectocele did it improve?

Thank you!

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13 Replies

  • Posted

    Some women don't have any symptoms apart from feeling the "lump" but it usually improves having your bowels opened and any discomfort from the ligaments being pulled. Have you any symptoms?
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    • Posted

      Almost all of them, I think.  I had a defecography and it showed I had a large rectocele (which they defined as greater than 3cm, don't know the actual size) with retention.  Quite a lot of retention... it looked like a mushroom cloud in my vagina when I was watching the test live.  I believe there was also some internal telescoping, internal hemmeroids, and anal incontinence seen in the test.  In my initial rectal exam my GP said it felt like there was just nothing there (referring to the fascia between rectum and vagina).

      The symptoms I've noticed are:

      - Back pain (always had some, but it's been absurdly bad since my last pregnancy and it didn't go away after birth.)

      - Bulge - has been external (pushed out during bowel movement) or at opening of vagina without me doing anything , but the bulge is usually internal. 

      - Mild anal incontinence (not a big leak, but I feel itchy and when I go to the bathroom to check, there is something to wipe)

      - have to splint

      - incomplete emptying (which causes all sorts of problems - constipation and having to have a bm many times a day to get it out.  Same BM can flip from 1 to 4 on the bristol stool chart.  It's a mess.)

      - Pelvic floor in spasm (used to be constant, but it is closer to normal after pelvic floor PT but when the intestine bulges through the rectocele it locks back up.  typically for a few hours before I can have a bowel movement).  The spasm also causes urine retention... which is relieved when I splint so I pee all over my hand.  Gloves help, but it still goes inside my vagina as I am splinting and I worry about that causing problems.

      I was just diagnosed with a rectocele last fall but in retrospect I've had a large rectocele for 9+ years (just after the birth of baby #2).  I don't remember how long I had to splint then, but it stopped at some point.  I've now had baby #3 and it isn't letting up or getting better on it's own.  He's 3 now and it's still a mess and I still have to splint and am very symptomatic  I'm 41.

      I've been seeing a urogyn for about 4 months now but it's been going really slowly.  She also is having me see a new doctor about my back as that is what is most difficult for me now.  She said she had never seen someone with back problems this severe caused by a rectocele.  I don't know what she thinks about surgery as she hasn't been giving me very much information.  I see her again in a few weeks and I'm hoping to get her to be more forthcoming about her plan.

      sorry for the length... believe it or not I cut a lot out.

       

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    • Posted

      Dorry I'm sure with all of your symptoms your consultant will want to operate because you can't continue like this. In the right hands (and a Urogynaecologist) there is no reason why it won't be successful. Regarding your back pain, I have known women suffering severe back pain prior to surgery. 
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    • Posted

      Thank you, Matron.  That is reassuring.

      For the women who had back pain, do you know if it improved at all after they had time to recover from surgery?

       

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    • Posted

      I unfortunately didn't see women when they had their post op checks but I've just texted my friend who is a research nurse in urogynaecology and she follows up ladies for 12 months after they have had their operation and she has told me yes 9 out of 10 say their backache has cured! 
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    • Posted

      Thank you for doing that!  I really appreciate it. Her answer gives me a lot of hope.  

      I'm sure I will need to do PT for my back and it will take time, but at least there is a good chance it will work this time. 

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  • Posted

    I had posterior repair due to toilet problems and am 9 weeks post op and bowel habits improving all the time, also no dragging feelings!
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    • Posted

      That's great to hear - it's amazing how difficult bowel problems can be.  Does it seem like things will be basically normal?  Or close to it?
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    • Posted

      Pretty close to it! Will have to manage it properly, so no getting constipated or straining to go to loo! I take Fybogel and Flourishe every day to be on the safe side! Good luck with everything when you have your ok!
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    • Posted

      Hi Sue, I had a rectocele repair rectally with a 4 hemorrhoidectomy 3 weeks ago as I have difficulty with BM: very thin, small amounts, many times a day. I am frustrated as I have no pain or dragging feelings any more, have healed super fast..... But still can't poop. Reading about hemorrhoidectomy surgery, people can poop within a week. I can't find any documentation on expected recovery of bowel function after rectocele repair. How soon after yours did you see improvement, what were your symptoms, was your repair vaginal or rectal? Thank you for any info. All info welcomed, I am frustrated and can get no info.  
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    • Posted

      I had my rectocele repair done recently and bowel function returned pretty quickly.  I am on stool softeners and laxatives.  I am also using glycerin suppositories but my repair was vaginal.... Not sure if that is ok to use suppositories with a rectal repair.  I had my first bowel movement within 48 hours of surgery though I have heard of people taking longer, say 4 or 5 days.  I took an osmotic stool softener and lots of fiber pre-op which may have helped speed things up.

      one trouble I am having is that I feel pressure and discomfort whether or not I need to use the bathroom.  I don't want to strain, of course, and the glycerin suppository makes it a lot easier to just go.  I am really glad I bought  them - I can't remember who here suggested them but thank you!!!

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    • Posted

      Hi Dory, thanks. I had that heavy pressure feeling for the first 2 weeks, then it faded over about 3 days. It was exacerbated if I walked or stood too much.  I believe I have an anal stricture/stenosis, my current symptoms came on after 2 weeks, I feel like I am about to pass a bowling ball. I pretty much can't pass anything, I end up dropping a small pinky finger size poop and it hurts to pass, then I ache for an hour. I am fairly sure my sphincter isn't opening. It's been 2 years since I fell 4ft and landed on my back which triggered me not being able to poop. I have been fighting doctors to take me (a middle age female) seriously. I had to have  a colon resection in November, then 4 internal hemorrhoidectomy, a rectocele and I still can't poop. Sooooo fed up. cry
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    • Posted

      That sounds awful, I am so sorry you are going through that.  I tried searching online and found people talking about using a glycerin suppository after hemmeroid surgery.  I think it had only been a couple of days.  The advice they were given online was to use a glycerin suppository and put some Vaseline on it, as well as on and in the rectum.  I have no idea if that is safe for you to do, but I think you should call your doctor and ask for help.  Ask about those if you want, but please get help.  

      I think you can also take An osmotic laxative like PEG 3550 ( miralax us, macrogal uk).  I can only imagine how constipated it is making you not to be able to go.

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