Pelvic Organ Prolapse — Are You at Risk?

Women's pelvises contain a lot of important internal organs, including your bladder, rectum, and uterus. Risk factors from family history to past pregnancies can lead to weakness or loosening of the muscles and tissues that work to keep your pelvic organs in place. 

With pelvic organ prolapse, you might experience incontinence and other symptoms. If not treated, pelvic organ prolapse can even end in your organs migrating out of your body through your vaginal canal, with serious impacts for your overall health.

Up to one in five women in the United States will deal with pelvic organ prolapse issues. While these can be uncomfortable and potentially embarrassing, pelvic organ prolapse can be treated and reversed by a doctor. 

At Brown, Pearson, and Guepet Gynecology, our expert care team (Christy James Guepet, MD, Robert C. Brown, MD, and Angela R. McCool-Pearson, MD) provides support for female patients includes pelvic organ prolapse diagnosis, support, and treatment. Here's what you need to know to assess your risks of ending up with pelvic organ prolapse.

Stress symptoms

Pelvic organ prolapse most typically happens after your abdomen has gone through significant stress, like a pregnancy. The muscles that had to stretch to accommodate your pregnancy may be weakened in the aftermath, causing pelvic floor issues. You are at increased risk for pelvic organ prolapse if you:

Other factors like family history and hormonal changes during and after menopause also put you at an elevated risk for pelvic organ prolapse. Older women are more likely to suffer from pelvic floor disorders, especially as you move into your 80s. Still, anyone can experience pelvic organ prolapse. 

Safe treatment options

If you have any of the following symptoms, you should get evaluated for pelvic organ prolapse right away:

At Brown, Pearson, and Guepet Gynecology, we can review your symptoms, perform a pelvic exam, and use other tests as needed to confirm your diagnosis of pelvic organ prolapse. Depending on your symptoms and the type of prolapse you have, the right treatments may vary. We offer a range of safe treatment options for pelvic organ prolapse, including:

If needed, surgeries may also be helpful to fully restore your abdominal structures. At Brown, Pearson, and Guepet Gynecology, our team offers a prolapse repair surgical procedure. Performed under general anesthesia, the surgery takes about 45 minutes and typically includes an overnight hospital stay. The recovery period lasts for six to eight weeks.

If you're worried about pelvic organ prolapse or are experiencing symptoms of pressure or “something coming out” of your vaginal area, contact Brown, Person, and Guepet Gynecology today. We can diagnose your condition and advise you on the right course of treatment. 

If you're not currently experiencing symptoms, but worry you might be at risk, schedule a consultation with our care team to discuss your options. Call our Fairhope, Alabama, offices today, or use the online scheduling tool to make your first appointment with one of our experienced providers.

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