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Types of Prolapse and How to Help Prevent Them

Did you know that tens of millions of women in America suffer from some type of organ prolapse? If you’re wondering about the different types of prolapse and if there are ways to prevent them, we’ve got you covered. 

At Darin Swainston, MD. FACOG, robotic gynecological surgeon Dr. Swainston and Dr. Daniel Richards are committed to helping women suffering from the life-altering symptoms of prolapse. Our practice offers multiple solutions for the different types of prolapse to our patients in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

What are the different types of prolapse? 

Pelvic organ prolapse is when the organs held inside your pelvis are no longer fully supported and begin to drop on the walls of your vagina. The most common cause of pelvic organ prolapse is a damaged pelvic floor due to pregnancy and childbirth. A history of weak connective tissue, obesity, GI problems, and certain illnesses or disease can also lead to the condition. 

There are different types of pelvic organ prolapse based on the organ that is dropped or dropping. Some of the most common include: 

Can prolapse be prevented?

There are steps you can take to prevent prolapse. Here are our top tips for preventing prolapse before it begins: 

1. Do pelvic floor exercises

Doing pelvic floor exercises as part of your daily workout is one of the best ways to prevent pelvic prolapse. Kegel exercises involve flexing the vaginal muscles you’d use if you were trying to stop your urine stream. Try holding those muscles for a count of three, relax, then repeat 10 times. For the best results, you’ll want to perform Kegels several times a day. 

2. Don’t strain 

Straining during a bowel movement, whether due to constipation or the desire to hurry things along, can cause prolapse. In particular, straining while having a bowel movement can lead to a rectocele, or your rectum dropping into your vagina. Instead of straining, relax and don’t try to push or rush things along. 

3. Eat and drink right

To avoid straining when going to the bathroom, it’s important to eat and drink right. Whole fruits and veggies have the fiber that your gastrointestinal system needs to prevent constipation and the need to strain. 

It’s also important to drink plenty of water to help your digestion. Try to drink eight to ten 8-ounce glasses each day, and just say no to sweet, sugary drinks — including fruit juice — as they spike your blood sugar and can cause weight gain and inflammation.

4. Don’t smoke

There are many reasons not to smoke, and preventing prolapse is another reason to quit. The long term effects of smoking cause your body problems when repairing weakened or older tissues, like the connective tissue in the pelvis. And the cough smokers develop puts added pressure on your pelvis.

5. Maintain a healthy weight

When you’re overweight or obese, your risk for developing prolapse increases due to the stress of extra pounds on your pelvic floor. If you have trouble maintaining a stable healthy weight, talk to your doctor. There are many options available to help you lose the extra pounds for every lifestyle and budget.

6. Watch for warning signs of prolapse

Preventing prolapse and taking care of your body starts with being alert to its signals that something is wrong. Prolapse can cause a significant amount of discomfort and pain. You may even notice a bulge coming into or extending out of your vagina. 

Other common symptoms include:

To determine if your symptoms are caused by prolapse, be sure to follow up on warning signs with a visit to your medical doctor.  

Are there treatment options for prolapse?

If you’re suffering from the problematic symptoms of prolapse, there are treatment options to consider. At Darin Swainston, MD, FACOG, our minimally-invasive robotic-assisted surgeries provide relief with a success rate close to 100%

Dr. Swainston or Dr. Richards meets with you to discuss your symptoms, go over your medical history, and perform any necessary exams or imaging. Once he verifies the type and extent of prolapse you have, he recommends a course of treatment customized to fit your needs. 

If you would like to learn more about the different types of prolapse and how to prevent them, or to get help with diagnosed prolapse, contact our Las Vegas office today!

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