Baptist Health Louisville: Treating Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Gynecologist Lori Warren, MD, explains treatment options for women with pelvic organ prolapse, which can cause pain, pressure, urinary leaking or incontinence, and even valve problems.
Treating Pelvic Organ Prolapse Health Talks Transcript
Lori Warren, MD, Gynecology, Women First of Louisville
Pelvic organ prolapse is where there’s a defect in the pelvic floor, and it actually allows the structures like the vagina and the uterus to start protruding down and actually causes pressure sometimes and different symptoms that women may present with. With any type of exertion, they might cough or sneeze and leak a little bit of urine. I kind of think of these things almost like a hernia, and we know a lot from the hernia doctors that there is sometimes a high recurrence rate. If you take weak tissue and put it to weak tissue, well guess what, you may end up with weak tissue. I tell people to try to stay as healthy as they can: diet, exercise, not smoking. Smoking can be a risk factor as well. I think that it’s nice for patients to know that there are options. A lot of patients come in and think there’s nothing that can be done. It sometimes affects women for years, and if they’re at the level where they really need a surgery, it can be life-changing. It improves their quality of life, how they feel about themselves, and they’re not having all these annoying symptoms that they’ve been dealing with, which can include pelvic pain, urinary leakage, and even some valve problems. It’s almost miraculous what we can do now in the operating room to help women get over this problem and reconstruct their pelvis back to normal anatomy.