Recognizing the Signs of Pelvic Organ Prolapse

The idea of what happens when you suffer from pelvic organ prolapse can be unnerving. This condition occurs when the muscles that support your pelvic organs, including your uterus, bladder, and rectum, weaken and cause them to fall and put pressure on your vagina or even drop out of it.  

Lake Havasu OB/GYN Care offers superior diagnostic services and treatment for advanced gynecological concerns like pelvic organ prolapse, and Dr. Kevin Hooker’s medical expertise is always combined with unparalleled compassion as he cares for you.

The facts about pelvic organ prolapse

Pelvic organ prolapse primarily strikes women who have had children, undergone a hysterectomy, or are postmenopausal. Unfortunately it’s not a rare condition, and approximately one-third of women suffer with it sometime during their lives.

The pelvic organs include:

The most common type of prolapse is called cystocele, which involves the prolapse of the bladder into the vagina, and leads to a visible bulge. Sometimes pelvic organs prolapse into the rectum, too. More than one organ can prolapse at a time, as well. 

In addition to childbirth, hysterectomy, and aging, prolapse is linked to obesity, respiratory conditions, cancers of the pelvic organs, and constipation. 

Know the symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse

It’s smart to familiarize yourself with the symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, not only because it affects so many women during different phases of their lives, but it better equips you to identify the signs and seek treatment promptly, saving you unnecessary anguish.

Pelvic organ prolapse symptoms include:

Not surprisingly, a driver of pelvic organ prolapse symptoms is which organ or organs drop. If your rectum faalls, you may notice constipation and painful sex, whereas if your bladder descends, urinary symptoms will come to the fore. 

How can pelvic organ prolapse be treated?

If you suspect pelvic organ prolapse, a visit to Dr. Hooker is definitely in order. He typically performs a pelvic exam and might recommend imaging tests so he can get a clear view of what’s going on. If he diagnoses you with pelvic organ prolapse, he has an arsenal of treatments he employs to bring you relief.

The one he chooses for you depends on the type of prolapse, its severity, and other factors. He frequently recommends doing Kegel exercises regularly, which involve tightening and relaxing the muscles that control your flow of urine. These moves strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. 

Another lifestyle practice Dr. Hooker may suggest is including more high-fiber foods in your diet to counter constipation. 

Dr. Hooker may also use a small device called a pessary to treat you, which targets your affected organs and supports them. These can be worn for extended periods but are removable. 

Sometimes surgery is necessary to rectify a prolapse problem. For example, if your uterus prolapses, he might advise and perform a hysterectomy. In this case, her refers you to the Lake Havasu Regional Medical Center.

Pelvic prolapse prevention

There are some steps you can take to prevent pelvic organ prolapse. These include losing weight if you’re overweight or obese; quitting smoking if you smoke, as the habit can lead to chronic coughing; and maintaining a healthy, high-fiber diet to discourage constipation. 

Call our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Hooker if you’re experiencing pelvic organ prolapse symptoms, or if you feel you’re at risk. You can also book one through our website

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