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Pt 7 (Feb13) Any old prolapse! Uterus/womb prolapse, rectocele, cystocele, enterocele, urethrocele, incontinence, pelvic floor, anterior and posterior repair, TVT etc

(993 Posts)

This is thread 7 (again - see below) of a long-running series of posts from ladies suffering from pelvic prolapses to support each other through the process of diagnosis, repair and recovery.

With apologies for confusion in thread numbers - the previous thread was called part 7 but it was actually the 6th thread.

Here are the previous threads:

Thread 1
Thread 2
Thread 3
Thread 4
Thread 5
Thread 6

Info from BBC Health

What is a pelvic prolapse?

As the muscles, ligaments and supporting tissues in the pelvis become weaker, they are less able to hold in the organs of the pelvis such as the womb (uterus) or bladder.

Gravity pulls these organs down and, in the more severe cases, may appear through the entrance to the vagina.

A variety of problems can occur, depending on where the weakness lies and which organs are able to descend, but in every case there is some degree of prolapse of the vaginal wall, which begins to invert (rather like a sock turning inside out).
Prolapse of the womb or uterus is the most common prolapse, affecting as many as one in eight older women to some degree
Prolapse of the bladder, known as a cystocele, is less common.
Prolapse of the urethra (the tube that carries urine out of the bladder) is known as a urethrocele.
Prolapse of the intestines is quite rare, and known as an enterocele or rectocele.

Symptoms

Symptoms depend on which tissues descend, and how severe the prolapse is.

They may include:
A sense of heaviness or pressure in the pelvis.
The appearance of a bulge of tissue in the genital area, which can be quite alarming, and is often red and sore.
Urinary problems, such as having to urinate more frequently, feeling the need urgently, being incontinent (losing control of the bladder) or, conversely, being unable to pass urine when you need to.
Pain in the pelvis or lower back.
Sexual problems, including pain and decreased libido.
Constipation.
Vaginal discharge or bleeding.

Treatment and recovery

Once a prolapse has developed, surgery to fix the affected organs is usually the only way to cure it effectively.

However, another option is to use a device known as a vaginal ring pessary. This is rather like a contraceptive diaphragm or cervical cap. It's made of silicone or latex, and placed in the vagina to push back the prolapsed organs and hold them in place. Many women happily manage their prolapse this way.

Tr0ubled Mon 15-Apr-13 22:15:09

Thankyou both. I've got a new prescription for Movicol and will go back to taking 2 doses a day and hope that helps. There is definitely a lot of swelling inside however I could feel the familiar rectocele bulge and it actually touched my anterior wall. Once I'd managed to go it no longer touched.
Seeing my consultant on Friday, hopefully he'll reassure me this is all part of the healing process.

Tr0ubled Thu 18-Apr-13 18:20:24

Never known it to be so quiet for so long on here. Hope everyone's ok? smile

Bladderific Thu 18-Apr-13 19:34:16

Hello Troubled I am so sorry that you have been feeling low. It really does take time to heal especially when you have had a lot done at the same time, be kind to yourself and keep your spirits up. It IS worth all of this when everything is healed but it takes alot longer that we think or are told that it will.

Sorry I have not been around on the thread there is so much going on in RL right now and I am stressed out of my wits tbh.

Recovery wise things are going really well. I had a couple of bladder scans a few weeks ago and am now only retaining about 60ml urine post void in comparison to over 200ml pre surgery. Not quite in the normal range but a huge improvement and I am really pleased, it has also really reduced all of the leaking which is just fantastic.
Still get uncomfortable from the back wall repair at work when sat at my desk for too long but still early days so I am not too worried.

I have also started taking Tranaxemic Acid which works so wonderfully well, wish that I had known about that years ago!

Hope that all others are well and healing and welcome to all of the new ladies. This is quite a journey and one that seems to take us all a very long time to come out of the other side of.
I dont know what I would have done without the support on this thread, thank you all x

Bladderific Thu 18-Apr-13 19:35:03

Hope that all goes well on Friday when you see your cons Troubled x

Troubled - hope it goes well tomorrow. I still (6 months on) have a ridge where the rectocele was, but I am reassured now that it isn't one (I was not at all convinced at my 8 week checkup). It is the "seam" where the surgery took place. Hope yours turns out to be similar.

Bladder - glad things are going well healthwise, but sorry life is so stressful for you at the moment.

Flossy - hope you are feeling a bit less upset now, that does all sound very distressing. Regarding the weight - I have been about 3 stone overweight for most of my adult life and kept doing half hearted diets but never losing more than a stone. I had a rectocele repair 6 months ago and put on another 9 pounds whilst recovering. Anyway, at the beginning of Jan I decided to make a proper effort to lose the weight to improve the long term prospects for my repair, then I had a gynae physio appt last month and told the physio I was losing weight now and she said that was good but I should have done it before surgery if possible as losing weight alters the layout down below and is not brilliant for the repair. So, with hindsight I would have made a real effort last year while I was on the waiting list. If you do go forward for surgery therefore I would really recommend you try and lose some of the weight beforehand.

daisygatsby Mon 22-Apr-13 15:55:47

Hello everyone, just looking for some advice and somewhere to air my concerns and thought this might be a good place.

Am pretty sure I have a prolapse (womb or uterus I suppose) and maybe even rectocele too after having DS 3 years ago. Thing is Im now pregnant again an am absolutely terrified of another vaginal birth and what it might do to me.

Anyone any experiences of this?

thank you

leakyR Wed 24-Apr-13 13:30:58

Gosh it is quiet isn't it? Any news Troubled?
I've been lurking a bit but not posting. Dahlia that Michelle Kenway 'brace and bulge' technique has been a revelation and really helped. Dh is tickled by the 'MmmmOooooo' sounds coming from the bathroom and sometimes shouts 'Baaaa' as he goes pastblush grin. Pain-wise things seem better every day, but I am so tired! I really haven't been doing a lot just pottering and the occasional short walk but at times I'm so wiped out that I feel nauseous. My mam has been here for 10 days and goes home on Saturday, DH is working from home next week as I really have no idea how I'll manage the DC day-to-day stuff without some help.
My big concern is that now the swelling from the op has gone down I can see and feel a bulge in front of the stitches for my cystocele. I'm terrified it's a new one and feel utterly demoralised, like I'll never feel 'normal' again. Should I contact the hospital or just wait for my post op check? My period is due around now, could that have an impact (she asks in desperation)?

Dahlialover Wed 24-Apr-13 13:44:12

Hi Daisy - I have read of people who have been pregnant with prolapses on this thread and previous threads - hope someone comes along who has experience.

I am logging on to report back that, 3 1/2 months after my rectocele repair, I am starting to get the hang of pooing! The repair in itself did not seem to solve my problem. I have tried to avoid being constipated, but it seems that once it starts, the fibre etc does nothing, as the slow transit time means that all the following contents dry out and contribute to further constipation. After trying diet, fluids, pelvic floor release exercises, etc, I seem to have had a bit of a breakthrough.

The breakthrough came with the use of movicol, to break the cycle of long term constipation, then the fibre, fluid (and kiwi fruit). That, and the confidence to give a little 'push' where needed as a result of the repair being healed, and relaxation in the right places and bingo! I think I've finally got it!!!!! I am now going normally most days for the first time in 21 years and am really, really pleased smile I do feel that it has all been worth it now.

Dahlialover Wed 24-Apr-13 13:54:23

Goodness, Leaky! We seem to have managed to cross post on a thread that has been quiet for days.

Glad things are going better for you. My children are all a uni, but I have still found it hard to get going. They all came back for Easter, and I was just about ready for them (had op in Jan), although the cleaning etc that had been done was just the basics. Be gentle on yourself.

When do you have the post op check? I have found that I am feeling more normal at the repair site as time goes on. It is a little lumpy, but since I can no longer feel a 'gap' between rectum and vag, I have to trust it is all as it should be. My check was at 4 1/2 weeks when my gynae though I should be up and about and dancing, but in truth, that was when I was just starting to dip my toe in the water and sitting was becoming more achievable!

NeopreneMermaid Wed 24-Apr-13 20:06:26

Leaky, I emailed my surgeon's PA when I thought I had a new prolapse post-op and he got me in two days later (and confired it sad ). Worth a shot?

Daisy, I had a cystocele after dc1 and then got pregnant with dc2 15 months later. The pregnancy itself made everything a bit looser (all that relaxin) but the birth itself did no further damage. Not everyone is he same if course but I got referred to the obgyn when I got pregnant to explain my worries and she said essentially the damage is done so another vaginal birth won't exacerbate things. Talk to your midwife and see the obgyn if you think it might help.

NeopreneMermaid Wed 24-Apr-13 20:08:15

*confirmed

leakyR Wed 24-Apr-13 21:20:25

My procedures were done on NHS and follow up with consultant is not a matter of course; only just realised this having reread all the paperwork from hospital. Apparently my next port of call is back to GP, I'm only 22 days post op - I'm not sure I want my GP poking round in there. I'm going to chance a call to the Women's Healthcare team tomorrow, the worst they can do is refer me back to GP.

Hey everyone, I was here a while back. Can I join again?

Started IS cathetering yesterday at 26+5 weeks pregnant, has anyone else here done this?

Tr0ubled Thu 25-Apr-13 20:53:02

Leaky did women's health offer any advice? Sorry you feel your prolapse isn't sorted, I'm the same. I had to cancel last weeks appt but will be seeing my consultant tomorrow. Couldn't come soon enough, the last week has been pretty bad trying to go for a poo and I have been in more pain again. It's not unbearable but it's horrid to feel like you're taking a step backwards.
Dahlia I really feel as though I need to put pressure on too but I'm still quite full of stitches so don't dare, plus I don't want to as this is one of the things I was trying to fix.
Daisy have you asked to be referred to see if you can have a vaginal delivery? I have read on here of women delivering with rectoceles and cystoceles but not a uterine prolapse.

Nice to have a bit more chat on the board again, it's been so quiet!

Hello Schro, I remember you from last year, hope things have improved since then and congratulations on your pregnancy. I haven't done catheterisation, hooefully someone will come along who has.

WhoKnows smile Sorry I disappeared, I was finding it hard to keep up with the thread.

Things are unfortunately worse and ended up in Maternity the other day in retention, they tried to convince me to take a bag. sad I wasn't having it.

Was booked for cystoscopy and dilation before I found out I was pregnant again but they can't do it until the baby is born, I definitely have urethral strictures and they are querying the cystocele as they can feel a bulge as well but said "no obvious cystocele" , I can feel a quite obvious rectocele as well confused

I hope you have been okay?

Into the world of ISC, finding it much easier today after my appointment with the Uro nurse and being taught properly (I had to self teach myself in Maternity Assesment last night), managed to pee on a mirror in front of the nurse though.

blush

The thread was pretty busy around then IIRC, I was on a lot because I was due my surgery in Sept and had a lot of questions. All repaired successfully now, so I tend to just lurk, but it's nice when people come back.

Sorry things aren't so good, I'm not very clued up on the urinary side of things (mine was a rectocele) but it sounds as though you are getting some good support from the Uro nurse.

How did you find the surgery, if you don't mind me asking?

Yeah, support is definitely getting better. smile

It was OK, all went to plan and there wasn't too much pain, the recovery was pretty smooth too, but I would say it took 3-4 months to be fully fit and active again, the first 6 weeks were pretty trying in terms of childcare, housework etc. I feel much better than I did a year ago (it's a year this week since it all went wrong down below quite suddenly). I've still got a cystocele so need to take care of that, but it doesn't cause me any problems at the moment.

I'm glad you recovered well. Are they going to do anything about the cystocele?

Thanks, they referred me to the gynae physio for advice on how to prevent the cystocele getting worse now it hasn't got the rectocele supporting it (PFEs tailored to my exact needs, general lifestyle advice) and so far so good, it isn't causing any problems at all. The surgeon told me I could self refer back to him if I did develop problems and not have to get another GP referral, which is good news for if it does happen (I suspect it will inevitably at some point).

Nannasylv Sat 27-Apr-13 14:00:53

Hi everyone. I've not been on here for ages, as life got VERY busy! I've been single again for 10 weeks now, and started a new job 6 weeks ago. Life is good, but would be even better, if I could get fixed! I so envy all of you, who are coming out the other side! Anyone know if Mr. Harmston, at Coventry is good? I'm seeing him soon. Fingers crossed!!!

Footle Sat 27-Apr-13 16:43:56

Good to see you, NannaS. I'm glad you have an appt and I hope someone can reassure you about the consultant. There should be some details on the hospital website about how he is rated and what his specialty is. Congrats on your new single status and new job, and I hope you are happy with both of them. I lurk and post here occasionally, and I hope I'll see any updates that you post - I often wonder how you are doing.
all the best.

edwinbear Sun 28-Apr-13 21:02:06

Just checking back in. 8 weeks post cystocele and rectocele repair on Tuesday. I've been discharged by my consultant after a final check up who said everything looked good. I still have a couple more stitches to dissolve so no sex for another couple of weeks (not that I am in any rush at all to jump back in the saddle), but I'm back at work and have started doing a bit of light exercise in the gym, swimming, the cross trainer and a spinning class this morning. The class wasn't a great idea in hindsight, stitches are still too sore for that. I have to say, I still don't feel 100% healed, probably about 90%, but still have had the dragging sensation just before my period and still a bit sore.

Tr0ubled how did you get on with the consultant on Friday?

Tr0ubled Mon 29-Apr-13 15:59:32

Hi edwinbear I got on ok thankyou. I have a cople of stitches still to loose too but otherwise healing well. There's a small tag at the bottom of my perenium scar that if it doesn't go he'll cut off under local in a month.
Still unfortunately have a few BM issues and weeing is very slow. Can get quite a lot of aching after a BM and he thinks my pelvic floor is still spasm'ing therefore not relaxing to let me go. He's referring my for physio to try and retrain the muscles. I hadn't realised quite how bad they were before - he told me after the op that he'd had to put more stitches than ever before in but on Friday he said that my pelvic floor had totally separated. It's no wonder it still hurts as he's brought it together and the muscles aren't used to it yet.

nanna I hope all goes well with your appointment and you finally get a positive plan for surgery.

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