Pelvic organ prolapse is a very common female health condition. Exactly how common varies widely across studies, depending on the population studied, but symptoms are seen in 30-76% of women in routine gynecology care.
The Pelvic Floor
The "pelvic floor" is a group of muscles that form a “hammock” across your pelvic opening. Normally, the surrounding muscles and tissue keep the pelvic organs in place. These organs include your bladder, uterus, vagina, small bowel and rectum.
Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when the pelvic floor muscles and other supporting tissues becomes weak, and one or more organs shift out of their normal positions and into the vaginal canal, putting pressure on the urethra and inhibiting the flow of urine.
Symptoms of a Prolapsed Bladder
Vaginal childbirth and menopause are the two leading causes of pelvic organ prolapse. POP may cause urinary difficulties, urgency, and stress incontinence. Incontinence is often reported after surgery for this condition. A cystocele, or prolapsed bladder, can cause the following urinary issues:
- Difficulty urinating
- Stress incontinence
- A sensation of incomplete voiding
- Leakage during sneezing, coughing – any exertion that puts pressure on the abdomen
- Frequent Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
Treatment for Incontinence and avoidance on UTIs
Urinary incontinence and Urinary Tract Infections, can be managed and prevented with Intermittent Catherization (IC), a therapy that is easy to use and mimics the normal way of urinating. It is portable and discreet.
Pelvic organ prolapse causes a range of symptoms which can be grouped as LUTS – Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms. Learn more about LUTS in our free eBook: "Women and LUTS".
Ann Gormley et al. "Diagnosis and Treatment of Overactive Bladder (Non-Neurogenic) in Adults: AUA/SUFU Guideline" American Urological Association (2014)
Irwin et al., BJU International,2009
Dielubanza, EJ & Schaeffer,The Medical clinics of North America,2011.
Foxman et al., The American journal of medicine, 2002
Drake et al. Neurourology and urodynamics, 2016
Center for Urogynecology and Pelvic Floor Disorders, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health Institute, Cleveland Clinic, USA