“I was taking a shower and when I went to wash “down there”, I felt something coming out of me”…….or….
“I feel this bulge between my legs along with lots of pressure…….I’m not sure what it is”…. or….
“I feel this constant pressure sensation that gets worse as I walk and now I’m afraid to go outside”…… Most of the time I already know what’s going on before patient’s find the words to tell me……good thing, as most women are sooo embarrassed or can hardly find a way to describe what they are experiencing.
Prolapse is more common than you think…….
About a third of women will be affected by prolapse at some point in their lifetime.
I oft times advise my patients, specifically my more “seasoned” patients…. the next time you are out to lunch, ask your girlfriends, “who among you has been treated for a prolapse related issue?”…….
Funny thing is, in some cases, I know a few of the “girlfriends”……and it just so happens that a few of the “girlfriends” are patients of mine for the EXACT SAME REASON!
“I guarantee you, you are NOT alone”.
Here are some quick facts about prolapse that might save you a frantic weekend call to the doc on-call, or a hurried visit to your gynecologist’s office:
1. Prolapse will NOT kill you!
I can’t begin to tell you the sighs of relief I get when I relay this small yet important fact to patients.
2. Prolapse can affect your bladder, rectum, uterus, vagina
3. There are many different causes of prolapse. A few of the more common ones include:
- child birth
- connective tissue disorders
- chronic cough
- jobs that require heavy lifting, genetics, etc.
4. Common symptoms include but are not limited to:
- feeling of pressure in the pelvis/feeling something is “falling out” of the vagina.
- Bowel or bladder issues such as incomplete emptying of the bladder, constant urge to urinate, or constipation.
- Low back pain.
- Bleeding from the vagina.
5. Surgery isn’t the ONLY option.
How we, as in you the patient, and your ob/gyn manage your prolapse is ENTIRELY up to you.
It usually is dependent upon how significant your prolapse is, which can typically be determined by an exam, and how bothered you are by it.
While surgery is a very viable option, I also have a fair share of patients that either choose to observe their prolapse, as it isn’t interfering with their daily activities, or go with a more conservative approach such as a pessary, which can be used to hold the prolapsing organ into place (more on pessaries later as they deserve a blog all to themselves).
Hoping this blog adds some value to your day!
Until next time,
Look Better. Feel Better. Be Better.
Mother, Midwesterner, and award-winning OB/GYN, Dr. Angela is equal parts best girlfriend and bold professional, supporting women’s health with innovative approaches to care and heavy doses of humor. Dr. Angela has done more than launch a successful practice, she has defined herself as a voice for a new generation of womanhood, established her ASK DR. ANGELA brand committed to authenticity, and built a community rooted in trust, candor, and compassion.