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Problem after rectocele operation

(17 Posts)
sunnyspot Sat 17-Sep-16 16:46:48

I had an operation to repair a rectocele several years ago. Since then my dh has not been able to fully penetrate me.
I would be grateful to hear if anyone else has had this problem, and if so, did you have further surgery or just put up with it?

PollyPerky Sun 18-Sep-16 19:53:46

That's awful sad

Why have you put up with it so long?

Gynaes are very careful not to make women 'too tight' (I've had a full repair myself - front and back wall and uterus) so you ought to talk to your GP.

It might be you don't need surgery- maybe you need to use dilators just to open you up a bit gradually. That's why you need a specialist to have a look around and decide what needs doing.

Ask your GP to refer you to a gynae who specialises in pelvic floor repairs- not all do.

sunnyspot Sun 18-Sep-16 22:10:54

Thank you Polly. I will go to the GP. I guess I left it so long because I kept hoping it would gradually "open up" after time. Clearly that isn t going to happen now. Just hope I don t need more surgery.

Footle Sun 18-Sep-16 22:24:05

The same operation has left me with scarring that can make penetration painful. I'm in my late 60s btw. I use Vagifem pessaries regularly. We take longer over foreplay because the scar tissue means my vagina takes longer to expand internally, and we always use Sylk lube as well. There are still occasions, and positions, where it's not comfortable so we do something else instead.

I don't think further surgery would help. I've heard of a treatment using silver nitrate to reduce scar tissue, but I don't know if it's still used, or how helpful it is if so.

I hope some of this helps. Feel free to PM me.

Footle Sun 18-Sep-16 22:25:31

Ps, I did have dilators to use but found them oddly upsetting, so they didn't help. You need to be able to relax or they're no good !

Footle Mon 19-Sep-16 06:50:40

sunnyspot, I'm bumping this to make sure you see it as I put a lot into writing it for you !

sunnyspot Mon 19-Sep-16 17:23:36

Thank you so much Footle for replying. I will look into those products . I have to say I really don't t want any more surgery.

Footle Mon 19-Sep-16 20:45:01

I hope some of the info will be helpful. I can't see how further surgery could help - it could only produce more scarring and nerve damage. You can ask for a referral to a women's physio,who may be able to give you more help. We don't need to settle for wrecked sex.

PollyPerky Tue 20-Sep-16 07:30:54

Just to add, not sure of your age but if you are 40+ you could have low oestrogen levels and be suffering with vaginal atrophy as well as the overly tight stitching from the op. VA can mean the vagina shrinks and can make sex difficult for anyone regardless of operations. As Footle says, certain products like Vagifem and Ovestin ( weak oestrogen cream) can help plump things back up and change the elasticity to how it was.

sunnyspot Tue 20-Sep-16 17:00:05

I am over 40 but I ve never heard of vaginal atrophy. Definitely sounds like I need the cream.

PollyPerky Wed 21-Sep-16 08:20:52

Vaginal atrophy is due to loss of oestrogen. It happens to almost all women after 50 unless they are very lucky! What it means is the vagina shrinks and the lining changes from plumped up to dry and thin sad It can also affect the outer bits that can become dry, itchy, red and even split (sometimes it's confused with thrush.)

This means sex can be painful or even impossible. Unfortunately many women don't know the cause or are too shy to ask for help and end up avoiding sex and blaming 'old age'. The treatment is a weak oestrogen cream or tiny pessary and these have to be used for life if you want to prevent the problem coming back.

sunnyspot Wed 21-Sep-16 09:08:07

Thanks for the explanation Polly. I always assumed it was due to being stitched up too tightly after the rectocele op and was worried that if penetration was forced it would open up the old wound. Fortunately I have a lovely understanding dh but after your and Footle's helpful posts I am going to see the GP.
Do you know if these creams carry any risks? I looked one up and it mentioned a link with cancer ?
Off to work now but will catch up later.

Jenijena Wed 21-Sep-16 09:14:04

Are you on Facebook? There's a pelvic organ prolapse support group I've found really useful for information and support.

Footle Wed 21-Sep-16 09:41:50

Vagifem 10mg is supplied as a tiny pessary, each in its own applicator. It's a form of HRT, but topical not systemic , and it gives you a very small dose of oestrogen. I believe if there is any risk , it's minimal. The benefit to my love-life is incalculable. Don't forget you need lubrication as well.

sunnyspot Thu 22-Sep-16 08:26:33

Thank you Jen I ll look into that.
And thanks Footle for info on risk. I ll report back after visit to GP.
Why are women's bodies so complicated ??!

Footle Thu 22-Sep-16 13:56:27

Men's bodies could do with an upgrade too. Do come back and tell us how you get on - and add any more information your Dr comes up with.

sunnyspot Thu 22-Sep-16 16:19:10

Will do. It's not till next month.

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