Prolapse surgery is performed when organs move from their natural position in the body. A prolapse is defined as an organ that has “slipped” or “fallen” out of place. This occurs because the ligaments or muscles around the organ stretch or weaken to the point where they cannot hold the organ in position any longer. Aging, childbirth, a hysterectomy, obesity, and repeated strenuous activity are the main causes of a prolapse. Sometimes a prolapse can be mild and sometimes you can experience a prolapse of more than one organ at the same time.
Prolapse surgery is common among women. About 34 million women in the world suffer from a prolapse, and 1 in 2 women age 45 or older have a pelvic organ prolapse, which affects the bladder, uterus, or rectum (the pelvic cavity organs). A pelvic prolapse can include a cystocele, which is a prolapsed bladder, dropped bladder or fallen bladder, into the vagina. It’s also known as an anterior prolapse because the front, or anterior, wall of the vagina has collapsed due to the bladder bulging into it.
Other types include: a urethrocele (a prolapse of the urethra into the vagina); a uterine prolapse (or uterus prolapse); a genital prolapse such as a vaginal prolapse (also known as a vaginal vault prolapse or prolapsed vagina); an enterocele (or prolapse of the small bowel); and a rectocele (or prolapse of the intestine into the rectum); and a cervical prolapse (or cervix prolapse).
Prolapsed bladder surgery can use techniques to lift and keep the bladder in its proper position. Rectocele repair or cystocele repair can be completed through the vagina by making an incision and pulling together the stretched or weak tissue to strengthen the wall of the vagina. Uterine prolapse surgery can lead to hysterectomy surgery if the tissue of the vagina and uterus is not repairable.
Prolapse surgery is used for repositioning prolapsed organs as well as strengthening muscles and tissues around them for support. Surgery for a prolapse is usually done when your condition is affecting your everyday life and your body is not responding to non-surgical treatments or lifestyle changes.