What is a Prolapse?
Continuing on from our step into the world of women’s health, this week we’re going to demystify “prolapse”. You’re either thinking “what is a prolapse” because you’ve never even heard of it, or you’re thinking “great, my GP mentioned I have one. What can I do to help it”?
Pelvic organ prolapse is quite simply a bulging of one of the pelvic organs (bladder, bowel or uterus) into the vagina. A prolapse occurs when there is weakness or damage to the tissues that support the vagina. There are a number of different types.
The main symptoms women report are a feeling of heaviness or a dragging sensation in the vagina, some may feel as if something is falling out of the vagina, others report constipation, urine leakage, a slow stream or a feeling of not emptying fully and painful intercourse. Women will generally report that their symptoms are worse after standing for long periods or after heavy lifting.
Most women will think that a prolapse is a result of menopause, and although the dreaded big M has an effect on the tissues and definitely is a risk factor, it is not the only cause. Other risk factors include, physical jobs, such as those which involve long periods of standing and heavy lifting (nurses, farmers, wives etc ), obesity, chronic respiratory conditions, weight lifting, chronic constipation, pregnancy and labour.
Women’s health physiotherapy is the first line of treatment for prolapse. A full pelvic floor assessment would be carried out to determine the level of prolapse and the condition of the pelvic floor. If it was required liaison with your GP or a gynaecologist could be arranged to ensure your prolapse is treated effectively.
So if you’ve finished reading and you’re thinking “I think I might have a prolapse”, then contact the clinic (067 42837) and ask for an appointment with Eimear. Or if you would be more comfortable, contact Eimear directly on her mobile 086 3576823 and chat to her in confidence.