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Is incontinence really the way forward?

(15 Posts)
SharingMichelle Sun 07-Feb-16 12:41:02

At my last smear my doc confirmed that I have a double prolapse.

It is a pain because I can't use tampons or a mooncup any more, but I live in a country where that isn't the norm anyway so my doc wasn't very bothered. I also struggle to poo because it all gets so far and then stops - no muscles to push it on out.

It's also a pain because I can't sneeze or cough without weeing. Trampolines and star jumps are totally out of the question. I just split up a dog fight (don't ask) and only realised afterwards that I'd weed copiously all over the street with the exertion of separating the dogs.

My doctor said the options were exercise or an operation.

I did have some success with exercise, but that was with 6 hours of 1-1 coached pilates a week. I haven't the time to keep that up. My own efforts don't make much difference.

The doc said no to the operation because it was plastic surgery under GA. She said it was far too big and risky a fix for a small problem.

I am only 34 and I feel gloomy that it's only going to get worse as I get older. I also feel guilty that I don't do enough squeezing exercises, and I ought to lose a stone which would help.

Does anyone have any experience?

FadedRed Sun 07-Feb-16 12:52:16

I don't think that accepting urinary incontinence is OK and would suggest you see a specialist gynaecologist to discuss the options. Yes, losing weight will help your symptoms if you are overweight, but if it's only one stone then unlikely to resolve the problem entirely. Specialised physiotherapist/stimulation/exercises can also be very effective, but it maybe that surgery is the only option that will resolve all your symptoms.
Please seek other specialist opinions and don't accept that you will have to look forward to being incontinent for the rest of your life at 34 years old.

Cocolepew Sun 07-Feb-16 12:54:48

I had a bladder repair, TVT, its like a sling of mesh that holds your bladder up.
I was in as a day patient, Im not sure what your Dr is talking about confused
Its also not a small problem if you cant poo and piss yourself without realising it.
Was this a GP or a gynae dr?

SharingMichelle Sun 07-Feb-16 13:00:54

She's a gynaecologist, but in a small, rather old fashioned country.

FadedRed Sun 07-Feb-16 13:18:50

I worked in Gynae in the eighties and nineties and your situation would have been unacceptable then, so your country/Dr must be very old fashioned! Is there any chance for you to go to a country where it's 2016 and access current medical care?

sadie9 Sun 07-Feb-16 14:53:54

If you can get some sessions with a physiotherapist who deals in this area, that'll really help. They don't like doing the op on younger women like you in case you have a baby and they'd have to re-do the operation again. So they do tend to put people off if they are pre-menopause unless there is a severe impact on your quality of life. After the op there is a restriction on lifting for a good while, so it makes minding small children difficult for a while after.
Some exercises even Pilates can make it a bit worse if you are exerting any pressure on the pelvic floor muscles.
You will get results to a certain point with well applied pelvic floor exercises. I certainly did and it helped with the poo-ing problem as you describe. I did have an op later on. The exercises take a few months to work so you have to be patient.
If you get a physio to assess you and then you have to go back to check progress that's a great help. Because you know someone will be checking in a few weeks, it makes you do them and the support is great. Then fit the pelvic floor exercises in to your routine, they literally only take a few minutes a day.

PollyPerky Sun 07-Feb-16 16:06:01

I had the op at 36 and was in not such a bad way as you. Yes, it was hard not to lift my then 2 year old, but had to manage.

You ought to try exercies for a good 6 months. NOT Pilates which can make it all worse.

Google Michelle Kenway- Oz physio. She has masses of info on her site about which Pilates exercises are BAD for anyone with prolapse, as well as loads of info on how to do your exercises correctly- 10 , 3 x a day.

You might need the operation so as others have said- get another opinion.

SharingMichelle Mon 08-Feb-16 04:17:00

Thanks all.

It sounds as though I need a second opinion and different exercises.

Will google Kenway.

SummerMonths Mon 08-Feb-16 09:46:10

I had TVT op in my thirties and it totally sorted me out. Day surgery and couldn't lift for a few weeks but no worse than if you were pregnant and couldn't lift. Now I can run, star jump everything. Insist on a second opinion.

SharingMichelle Thu 11-Feb-16 09:42:32

Well now I've started googling TVT all I can find are horror stories and petitions to get it banned. I don't know what to think.

sadie9 Thu 11-Feb-16 13:05:08

Thing about google and online forums is that people usually only post when they have a problem. The other 99% of people with successful outcomes don't post or rarely comment on specialist websites. Simple as that. Those TVTs are done day in and day out.
Your doc was a bit dismissive to call it a 'small problem'. It's bloody not small. Like it is our everyday lives we are affected. Walking, running, normal everyday life. I know the guilt of not doing the exercises, that's why I found it great to get the physio to check me every few months after the first couple of sessions.
I have heard of women with small kids having the prolapse repairs (different to the TVTs), but they usually have finished having kids.

SummerMonths Sat 13-Feb-16 11:55:20

Sharing - I read that stuff too before my op and freaked out. My surgeon reassured me he's never had a patient report serious and ongoing complications. I also knew two friends who had the op and were evangelical about the difference it made to their lives. So I went for it and was so glad I did. Obviously others feel differently but as the last post said, it tends to be the minority with problems who shout loudest. Those who are content with an op have little reason to write about it on the Internet.

mrsplopper Wed 17-Feb-16 16:13:11

I had the TOT (same as TVT, but the sling goes under urethra, instead of further up near bladder) op in 2007, it improved things massively. But now all those years later, I'm having trouble with it. Because it was a newish op, they didn't realize that the plastic mesh can, break up and shrink after time. I'm Currently waiting for an appointment at a London hospital, as there is only 1 surgeon who can try to remove the TOT, even then I think they can never remove the whole thing. Some people have needed repeated operations, to get it out. If I'd known the risks back then, I definitely wouldn't have, had it put in! Although I am dreading being back to square 1, as well 😕

bodyworks Wed 17-Feb-16 20:43:38

Where are you based? I am a women's health specialist physiotherapist working in Colchester in private practice.
This is not normal and something can be done. It's really important that you are doing your exercises correctly otherwise you can excercise until the cows come home with no great change. I have very good success rates and use realtime ultrasound too which is great as you can see what your muscles are doing - or not!

outtheothersidefinally Wed 17-Feb-16 20:53:39

You absolutely do not have to put up with his for the rest of your life!

If you can, treat yourself to Mutu (online training programme for core issues).

And read everything you can by Katy Bowman. Her books are relatively inexpensive on Amazon kindle. Here is her blog: plus there are online exercises.

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