Women’s Health Journeys
What is Prolapse?
Prolapse occurs when the ligaments and muscles that support the vagina and uterus are damaged, or age.
Prolapse typically is felt as a bulge in, or from, the vagina. Sometimes women will experience a sensation of dragging or heaviness in the pelvis. The sensations typically come and go, but gradually worsen over time.
One of the main causes of prolapse is pregnancy and childbirth.
As women approach the menopause, and move beyond, prolapse becomes more common. Family history also plays a role, as do chronic health problems such as being overweight, or having a chronic cough.
The most important first step in treating prolapse is making sure your health is at its best.
This means keeping weight in the normal range, improving general health and fitness, and attending to problems like a chronic cough. Stopping smoking is vital to improvement in this area.
Performing effective pelvic floor exercises, as taught and supervised by a physiotherapist, can help a great deal.
Preventing constipation and establishing good bowel habits can improve comfort. Ensuring the bladder is emptied also helps.
Surgery for Prolapse
When non-surgical treatments have not provided a good enough outcome, some women will consider surgery.
There are various different types of surgery, depending on the type of prolapse.