Ask an Expert 

April 22, 2013

colpocleisis and prolapse

Q:

Besides the colpocleisis, what other procedures repair a prolapsed bladder and uterus?

A:

Pelvic-organ prolapse can be addressed with a variety of surgical approaches, depending on a patient’s symptoms and goals for surgery. Colpocleisis is a surgical procedure that involves closing the vaginal canal with sutures and reducing the prolapsed organs. This procedure does not allow for future vaginal intercourse, so it may not be an appropriate option for some women.

Other pelvic-organ prolapse surgeries involve reconstruction to restore normal anatomy. The surgical route may depend on the site or organ that is prolapsed (example: uterus, bladder and/or rectum). Suspension of the uterus and bladder can be accomplished with sacrocolpopexy via an abdominal incision, which is often performed with mesh to affix the top of the vagina to the sacrum.

Correction of prolapse can also be performed via a vaginal approach, which involves suspending the sacrospinous ligaments or uterosacral ligaments. Additional procedures that may be performed, depending on the area of prolapse, include anterior colporrhaphy (repair of cystocele or bladder prolapse), posterior colporrhaphy (repair of rectocele or posterior vaginal wall prolapse), and hysterectomy. Consultation with a urogynecologist, or specialist in pelvic reconstructive surgery, will be beneficial in determining the best procedure to correct a prolapsed bladder and uterus. For other Women’s Health questions, check out the Doc is In blog for March.

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