You Don’t Have to Live with Uterine Prolapse

Uterine prolapse is very common, occurring in nearly one-half of all women between ages 50 and 79 to some degree. It occurs when the muscles and ligaments around the uterus weaken and allow the uterus to sag out of position or protrude out of the vagina. This can happen as a woman ages, especially if she has had multiple vaginal deliveries during childbirth. Keep in mind that although uterine prolapse most often affects postmenopausal women, it can happen to women of any age. At Coyle Institute, helping women overcome uterine prolapse is one of our specialties.

Am I Experiencing Uterine Prolapse?

Many women experience uterine prolapse without knowing it or experiencing any pain. In fact, in mild cases, uterine prolapse may not even require treatment. However, if you experience any of the following symptoms, you may be better off having your uterine prolapse treated:

  • Sensation of heaviness or pulling in your pelvis
  • Tissue protruding from your vagina
  • Urinary problems such as urine leakage (incontinence) or urine retention
  • Trouble having a bowel movement
  • Feeling as if you are sitting on a small ball or as if something is falling out of your vagina
  • Sexual concerns such as a sensation of looseness in the tone of your vaginal tissue.

Common Risk Factors and Diagnosis for Uterine Prolapse

Women who are postmenopausal and have had vaginal deliveries are at the highest risk for developing uterine prolapse. Additionally, women who are Caucasian, overweight and have a history of smoking, chronic coughing or straining and chronic constipation have higher risks. To diagnose uterine prolapse, your doctor will perform a pelvic examination to determine if the uterus has lowered from its normal position. Part of the pelvic examination will involve the insertion of a speculum to allow your doctor to see inside the vagina. Your doctor will feel for any bulges caused by the uterus dropping down into the vaginal canal. If you are also experiencing urinary incontinence or feel as though you cannot completely empty your bladder, a procedure called a cystoscopy may be used to examine your bladder and urethra.

Treatments for Uterine Prolapse

In mild cases, uterine prolapse is treatable through lifestyle changes such as losing weight. Additionally, doing daily Kegel exercises can tighten the pelvic floor muscles to help prevent uterine prolapse. In more advanced cases of uterine prolapse, a vaginal pessary (a plastic device in the shape of a circle that fits into the vagina) may be used to support the uterus by holding it in place. There are several different types of pessaries, but they are most commonly soft and removable. Hysterectomy is often considered in cases of more severe uterine prolapse or a surgical repair of weakened pelvic floor tissues. This surgery, called a hysteropexy, involves the resuspension of the prolapsed uterus by restitching and reinforcing its ligaments to lift the uterus and hold it in place. It is usually performed by laparoscopy and most women fully recover within four to six weeks.

Choosing Coyle Institute for Uterine Prolapse

The physicians at Coyle Institute have years of experience in treating and relieving uterine prolapse, and we know how sensitive the issue can be for women suffering from this condition. Women who are looking for state-of-the-art gynecological care, whether it’s minimally invasive treatments or more extensive surgeries, will find the expert treatment they need and deserve at Coyle Institute.

We specialize in urogynecology and are proud to be industry leaders in the use of minimally invasive procedures as well as providing a full range of gynecological services, cosmetic treatments and vaginal and vulvar rejuvenation. Call us today at 850-637-8258 to schedule your consultation.