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What should I do when I am experiencing Pelvic Organ Prolapse?

Question: My pelvic floor is shot. My bladder is in my vagina. What do I do? 

Answer from Dr. Daniel Gruber, urogynecologist from Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington D.C., part of John Hopkins medicine.

It sounds like you’re having pelvic organ prolapse or, if the bladder’s falling into the vagina or falling out, it’s called a cystocele to be specific. This is an extremely common issue that we treat regularly. I definitely recommend that you get a referral to your gynecologist. You can look at the American Urogynecologic Society website to find somebody who is certified in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. I’m also in the Washington D.C area, if you need my services

It can be difficult to empty your bladder with this condition, because if the bladder’s dropping so far out the urethra, it actually gets kinked over. As the bladder drops down, it’s like a garden hose getting kinked off. Sometimes, people have to push their bladder back in with their fingers. 

You may be experiencing other symptoms like heaviness, pelvic pressure, bulging, or something falling out the vagina. It’s very common to experience these towards the end of the day, especially if you’ve been on your feet for a long time. Gravity plays a role here as well. 

That’s why it’s important to be evaluated, as this can be a very big quality of life issue. There is no reason to suffer in silence. It’s important to get you feeling better so that you can live your life. 

Thankfully, there’s many different treatments for this condition. For example, a pessary can help sit inside the vagina to push that back. We also have lots of different types of surgical options as well that can be very helpful. 

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