Pelvic organ prolapse involve a dropping down prolapse of the bladder, urethra, small intestine, rectum, uterus, or vagina caused by weakness of or injury to the ligaments, connective tissue, and muscles of the pelvis. Women may feel pressure that feels as if something is bulging out of their vagina or they are sitting on a ball, have a sense of fullness in their pelvis, or have problems with urination or bowel movements. Pelvic organ prolapse occurs only in women and become more common as women age.
In vaginal prolapse the vagina stretches or expands to protrude on other organs and structures. The situation seldom involves the vagina alone. Supports for the uterus often stretch allowing it to also fall prolapse when a woman strains during a bowel movement.
This weakening allows the uterus, urethra, bladder, or rectum to droop down into the vagina. If the pelvic floor muscles weaken enough, these organs can even protrude out of the vagina. If you do have symptoms, your symptoms will depend on the organ that is prolapsed.
Some women with a pelvic organ prolapse don't have any symptoms and the condition is only discovered during an internal examination for another reason, such as a cervical screening. See your GP if you have any of the symptoms of a prolapse, or if you notice a lump in or around your vagina. Your doctor will need to carry out an internal pelvic examination.
The organs of the pelvis — the area of the body between the hip bones — include the vagina, cervix, uterus, bladder, urethra, intestines, and rectum. These organs are held in place by a group of muscles and other tissue. When this support system becomes stretched or torn, it allows pelvic organs to slip out of their normal places or sag down prolapse.
There are many different types of prolapse, including uterine, bladder and bowel prolapse. Causes of prolapse, symptoms, tests used to diagnose prolapse, and management and treatment of prolapse are discussed. Prolapse is caused by a stretching of the ligaments and muscles that support the pelvic organs, causing those organs to drop down.
A dropped or prolapsed bladder cystocele occurs when the bladder wall bulges into the vaginal space. It results when supporting muscles and tissues for the bladder give way. Anterior prolapse, also known as a cystocele SIS-toe-seeloccurs when the supportive tissue between a woman's bladder and vaginal wall weakens and stretches, allowing the bladder to bulge into the vagina.
The uterus is held in place by a group of muscles and ligaments. Several factors can contribute to the weakening of these muscles and ligaments, causing the uterus to sag. These factors include the loss of muscle tone as women age, injury due to childbirth especially women who have had many babies or large babiesobesity, chronic coughing, chronic constipation and all place added tension on the pelvic muscles. While mild cases of uterine prolapse often have no symptoms, more severe cases can actually interfere with bowel, bladder, and sexual functions.
The biggest cause of prolapse is pregnancy and birth, though a number of other factors such as family history, lifestyle and certain medical conditions can also cause prolapse. Treatment can vary from simple lifestyle changes to surgery. The biggest cause of prolapse is pregnancy and birth — almost one in two or 50 per cent of women who have been pregnant will have some kind of prolapse.