Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP)
POP refers to the bulging or herniation of one of more pelvic organs into or out of the vagina. The pelvic organs consist of the uterus, vagina, bowel, and bladder.
What are the Signs & Symptoms of POP?
- Heavy dragging feeling in the vagina or lower back
- Feeling of a lump in the vagina or outside the vagina
- Urinary symptoms: slow stream, incomplete emptying, frequency, urgency, incontinence
- Bowel symptoms: constipation, incomplete emptying
- Discomfort during sexual intercourse
What Causes POP?
The main cause is damage to nerves, ligaments, and muscles that support the pelvic organs. Risk factors for POP include:
- Pregnancy and vaginal childbirth
- Obesity, chronic cough, chronic constipation
- Connective tissue disorders
Where can POP occur?
The normal female anatomy consists of the bladder, vagina, and rectum supported by pelvic muscles.
Anterior Compartment Prolapse
This is the most common type, involving the bladder and/or urethra bulging into the vagina.
Posterior Compartment Prolapse
The rectum bulges into the back wall of the vagina.
Apical Compartment Prolapse
The uterus pushes out the vagina. This is the 2nd most common form of prolapse.
How is POP Treated?
- Non-surgical therapy
- Pelvic floor/Kegel exercises
- Surgical Therapy
- Restore your pelvic organs to their natural position while retaining sexual function
- Can be done vaginally, open abdominal incision, or robotically
(2) Vaginal closure (colpocliesis)
- If you have severe prolapse and are not sexually active
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it necessary to use a graft material during the surgery?
Not all repairs require a graft. If used, the graft may be absorbable or permanent.
How successful is surgery?
Almost 75% (vaginal surgery) and 90-95% (abdominal/robotic surgery) will have long-term cure of their prolapse symptoms.