Home Health & Fitness What Is Pelvic Organ Prolapse and What Should You Know About It

What Is Pelvic Organ Prolapse and What Should You Know About It

by Abhay Choubey

This can occur in several organs in the pelvis, including

Your bladder

Uterus

Rectum

Small intestine

Urethra

Vagina

Of these organs, bladder prolapse is the most common. Pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is more common in older women and in women with a family history of the disease. Normally, the muscles and ligaments of the pelvic floor hold all of these organs in place. However, any condition that weakens these muscles, such as excessive force during childbirth, can lead to loss of support and, consequently, pelvic organ prolapse.

Causes of pelvic organ prolapse

Several conditions can cause pelvic organ prolapse along the vaginal wall. However, most of these conditions are due to weakness or overstretching of the pelvic floor muscles. Listed below are conditions that can cause POP.

A large baby and/or a long, difficult labor, which causes excessive strain on the pelvic floor muscles during delivery, are the most common causes of PPH in women.

Obesity

Chronic constipation causes women to strain during defecation.

Smoking and persistent coughing, which can increase abdominal pressure on the pelvis.

Hysterectomy or removal of the uterus can reduce support to the surrounding pelvic organs and cause prolapse.

Tumors of the pelvic organs can put pressure on the pelvic muscles.

There is a family history of pelvic organ prolapse. In general, families tend to weaken the pelvic muscles.

lifting heavy objects

neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, or muscular dystrophy.

How do you know if you have pelvic organ prolapse?

Most women with POPS realize something is wrong when they feel pressure in the vagina. However, this is not the only way to tell if you have POP. There is a list of symptoms associated with this condition and people may have one or more of them.

There is a feeling of pressure or tightness along the walls of the vagina as the prolapsed organ puts pressure on the vagina and pelvic floor. Women often compare this sensation to that of an object falling out of the vagina.

Fullness in the lower abdomen

Back pain

Urinary incontinence or involuntary loss of urine through the urethra.

Pain in the vagina during sexual intercourse.

Difficulty with defecation, mainly constipation

Visible bulging or protrusion of tissue into or out of the vagina.

How is pelvic organ prolapse treated?

Pelvic organ prolapse usually lasts a long time and causes little discomfort at first. Most women can reduce symptoms by making lifestyle changes such as

Weight loss

Pelvic floor exercises or Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor.

Prompt treatment of constipation with laxatives and high-fiber foods. The best way to control constipation is by taking 20 grams or more of fiber a day and 1 to 1.5 liters of water.

Avoid lifting weights

These lifestyle changes are sometimes accompanied by insertion of suppositories into the uterus or vagina to mechanically support the prolapsed areas and prevent pressure on surrounding organs or the vagina.

For more information please visit https://www.opalphysio.ca/pelvic-organ-prolapse

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