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Pelvic Support

young female patient smiling at female nurse

Pregnancy and childbirth, obesity and straining can damage or weaken the ligaments, muscles and tissues that support your pelvic organs. After menopause, the loss of estrogen may make these problems worse. Fort Sanders Women’s Specialists offers pelvic support options for women suffering pelvic organ prolapse.

Symptoms of Pelvic Support Issues

Symptoms vary depending on the type of pelvic support issue that affects you, but may include:

  • Feeling of heaviness or fullness, as if something is falling out of the vagina.
  • Pulling or aching in the lower abdomen, groin or lower back.
  • Leaking of urine or problems having a bowel movement.
  • Increase of symptoms after long periods of standing or with repeated coughing or straining.

Pelvic Organ Prolapse

Pelvic organ prolapse, similar to a hernia, happens when your organs bulge into the vagina. Different organs can prolapse into the vagina, and many women may have more than one type:

  • The vaginal roof or walls can descend into the vagina.
  • Your uterus or cervix may fall into the vagina.
  • Parts of your bladder can drop, causing urine leakage.
  • Small intestine or rectum can prolapse into the vagina.

Pelvic Support Treatments

Some women can be helped with the fitting of a pessary – a removable ring-type vaginal support similar to a diaphragm, which opens the vagina and pushes back pelvic organs. Estrogen therapy also can help, as can pelvic exercises, changes in diet and avoiding lifting or straining.

Surgeries to repair vaginal prolapse are done with minimally invasive techniques. With severe cases, robotic laparoscopic procedures may be required.

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