You just had a baby, but something feels “off “down there. You’re not quite sure what to expect because you’re new to the whole postpartum process, but you’re certain that a bulge in your vagina is not normal. When the vaginal pressure does not ease up, you decide to check in with your doctor, only to find out that you have a type of Pelvic Organ Prolapse called Uterine Prolapse.
As scary as this diagnosis may sound to you, there are options available to relieve symptoms, or repair the prolapse.
Uterine Prolapse: Causes and Treatments
You wonder how this prolapse happened. One day your uterus is snugly in place, and the next, you are suffering the unpleasant symptoms of pain, pressure and an aching lower back. A prolapsed uterus is a common occurrence after a vaginal birth, but even women who have never given birth can also develop a prolapse. When damage to the fascia, ligaments and muscles of the pelvic floor occurs, it can cause the uterus to sag into the vaginal canal – leading to incontinence, and a feeling that something is “stuck” or “falling out.” These problems may worsen with age, as decreased estrogen causes the pelvic floor to relax even more.
Fortunately, you don’t have to deal with these meddling symptoms. There are options, depending on the severity of your symptoms.
Relax – not every uterine prolapse will require surgical repair. You and your doctor can work together to decide the best course of action to fit your lifestyle and diagnosis. Many women with mild symptoms find that pelvic floor physical therapy is helpful in reducing symptoms. Those with more moderate symptoms might find reprieve by wearing a device known as a pessary, which is fitted to your vagina, and worn internally. A pessary can help to lift the uterus out of the vagina, and relieve many of the distressing symptoms. If your symptoms are more severe, Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery may be the best option to ensure that you are not living with the troublesome effects of uterine prolapse.
You are not alone! Many other women are dealing with the inconvenience and pain of a prolapsed uterus, and you don’t have to suffer in silence. Make a list of questions and concerns and contact your doctor today. A prolapsed uterus doesn’t have to rule your life.
Specialists in Female Pelvic Anatomy
Physicians who are board certified in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS) understand complex female anatomy, and are able to offer a range of effective treatment options when problems occur. In fact, Cherokee Women’s is the only OB/GYN practice in the southeast with multiple OB’s who are also board certified in FPMRS.
You’re in good hands – during your pregnancy and after. Talk to your FPMRS physician about your options to find relief for your symptoms – and help that “bulge” disappear.