Uterine Prolapse: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment
November 18, 2022
A typical problem that develops as people age is uterine prolapse. The muscles and ligaments surrounding your uterus deteriorate over time and with repeated vaginal deliveries. Your uterus may sag out of place if this support system begins to collapse. Depending on the severity of the prolapse, there are surgical and nonsurgical treatments for uterine prolapse treatment.
Uterine prolapse: What is it?
The muscles and tissues surrounding your uterus can weaken, a condition known as uterine prolapse. Your uterus sags or dips into your vagina as a result of this. It can occur to anyone given the gender “female” at birth (AFAB). Still, it tends to happen more frequently after menopause and in persons who have had several vaginal deliveries.
Your pelvic floor muscles are the muscles, ligaments, and other structures that make up your pelvis. These muscles support your uterus, rectum, vagina, bladder, and other pelvic organs. Your pelvic floor muscles become so weak or injured that they cannot support you, which leads to a prolapse. As a result, your pelvic organs will drop into or out of your vagina.
The degree of uterine prolapse depends on how weak the uterus’ supporting muscles have become. For example, your uterus may have slid into your vagina partially in an incomplete prolapse. Thus, a lump or bulge is produced. In more severe circumstances, your uterus may slip so much that it protrudes from your vagina. It’s referred to as a complete prolapse.
What stages of uterine prolapse are there?
- Stage I: The uterus is located in the vagina’s upper portion.
- Stage II: The uterus has nearly reached the vaginal opening.
- Stage III: The uterus protrudes from the vagina
- Stage IV: The uterus has fully exited the vagina.
Who is susceptible to uterine prolapse?
Most susceptible to uterine prolapse are those who:
- Have had one or more vaginal births.
- Have entered menopause.
- Have uterine prolapse in your family.
- Have undergone pelvic surgeries before.
When your ovaries cease making the hormones that control your monthly menstruation cycle, menopause sets in. Estrogen is one of these hormones. This specific hormone maintains the strength of your pelvic muscles. As a result, you run a larger risk of suffering a prolapse without it.
How frequently does a uterus prolapse?
The problem of uterine prolapse is quite common. As you become older, your risk of acquiring the illness rises. In addition, if you’ve had several vaginal deliveries, your risk of uterine prolapse is also increased.
What signs and symptoms show a prolapsed uterus?
Many women who have this illness don’t exhibit any symptoms. But if symptoms do appear, they might be as follows:
- Urinary leakage
- Difficulty fully emptying your bladder
- The pelvic feeling of fullness or heaviness
- Bulging in your genital area
- Lower backache
- Lower abdominal or pelvic pain that hurts or pressures
Uterine prolapse: what causes it?
Several muscles and ligaments in your pelvis hold your uterus there (pelvic floor muscles). Your uterus starts to droop as a result of these structures losing their ability to support it. The pelvic muscles can deteriorate due to a number of reasons, such as:
- The muscular loss brought on by menopause.
- Vaginal delivery, especially if you’ve had numerous or large infants (more than 9 pounds).
- Persistent wheezing or coughing
- Persistent constipation
- Continuous heavy lifting
How is uterine prolapse diagnosed?
To ascertain whether your uterus has descended from its normal position, your doctor will conduct a pelvic examination. First, they examine your uterus and vagina while performing a pelvic exam by using a speculum, a device that allows them to look within your vagina. Next, they will examine you to check for any bulges from your uterus entering your vaginal canal. Additionally, they can ask you to cough, stretch, or pretend to hold your pee. They can observe how frail your muscles are by doing this.
How is prolapse of the uterus treated?
Discuss treatment alternatives with your healthcare professional if your symptoms concern you or keep you from feeling comfortable while doing your daily activities. A change in lifestyle, such as losing weight, may be beneficial. Exercises like Kegels can also help. These make your pelvic floor muscles stronger. You squeeze the muscles that control the flow of pee during this exercise, hold for up to 10 seconds, and then let go. 50 times a day.
Symptoms may also be eased with a pessary. Your doctor will put this device into your vagina to support your pelvic organs.
Diet and lifestyle: Making dietary and lifestyle adjustments may assist in relieving symptoms like constipation. Increasing your water and fibre consumption may help you go to the bathroom less frequently. When you stand or walk, your pelvic muscles aren’t under as much stress as they are if you maintain a healthy weight for your body type.
What happens if a prolapsed uterus is not treated?
It depends on how severe the prolapse is. Your doctor might not advise treatment in minor circumstances when it has little impact on your quality of life. Your body’s pelvic region’s other organs may be impacted by uterine prolapse (like your bladder and rectum). When uterine prolapse becomes uncomfortable, doctors frequently suggest treatment.
Can I push my uterus back up that has prolapsed?
You cannot force your uterus back up; therefore, no. Your doctor can only treat a prolapsed uterus.
What can I do to lower my chance of uterine prolapse?
Some factors cannot be avoided, such as several vaginal deliveries or menopause.
You can take steps to lower your chance of suffering a prolapse. Following are a few lifestyle recommendations that can reduce your risk of prolapse:
- Keep a healthy weight and engage in regular exercise.
- To make your pelvic floor muscles stronger, perform Kegel exercises.
- Give up smoking. Doing this reduces the possibility of a chronic cough that can further strain your pelvic muscles.
- When carrying large goods, use proper lifting procedures.
- Refrain from straining or becoming constipated.
Who to consult for uterine prolapse?
You could consult a physician who focuses on diseases of the female reproductive system for uterine prolapse. A gynaecologist is a doctor of this kind. You could also visit a medical professional with expertise in reconstructive surgery and pelvic floor issues. Urogynecologists are this kind of medical professional.
People also ask
1. What does a uterine prolapse feel like?
The following are signs of mild to severe uterine prolapse:
- Seeing or feeling tissue protruding from the vagina.
- Pulling or heaviness in the pelvis.
- Having the impression that your bladder is partially empty when you use the restroom.
2. Can a gynaecologist tell if you have a prolapse?
During a pelvic exam, uterine prolapse is frequently diagnosed. Your doctor might do the following procedures while performing a pelvic exam on you: Push in as if you had a bowel movement. This can assist your doctor in determining how far the uterus has inserted itself into the vagina.
3. How do doctors check for prolapse?
Your doctor will check your pelvic region and vagina for any lumps. In addition, your vagina’s walls may be held open by a speculum, which they may carefully insert to check for prolapses.
4. Can an ultrasound see a prolapse?
An ultrasound exam, in which sound waves are used to make images of the pelvis, may be prescribed by your doctor if your symptoms suggest that more than one organ has moved out of place. In addition, your doctor can assess the prolapse’s severity with the aid of ultrasound.