What causes uterine prolapse to happen?

A prolapse for a sufferer can be not only physically painful but also deeply embarrassing – as with many conditions relating to the reproductive organs, a reluctance to seek help can often cause patients to suffer in silence for much longer than necessary. But just what are the factors that can cause this uncomfortable condition?

Childbirth

Up to 50% of prolapses can be attributed to just one thing; childbirth. The muscles which keep everything in place can be weakened when a baby is born, and healing can come with permanent damage to the muscles. Occasionally nerve damage may also add to the problem, as a loss of muscle movement can lead to the inability to hold organs like the uterus and the bladder in the correct position.

Muscles in the pelvic floor normally hold these organs up; if they are damaged then the organs can fall down, causing a severe uterine prolapse.

Ageing

After women go through the menopause the amount of oestrogen in the body naturally declines. This is the hormone which stimulates the body to produce collagen, a protein which enables supportive tissues in a woman’s pelvis to stretch and return to normal; the ligaments are weakened.

Other external factors

Another factor which can contribute to the likelihood of prolapse is being overweight, so those at a healthy weight are at less risk of this unfortunate condition. A regular history of heavy lifting for example in a manual labour job can also up the odds of prolapse, as can chronic constipation, a previous pelvic surgery, certain genetic diseases and a persistent cough. All of these elements contribute stress to the pelvis, which can lead to a weakened pelvic floor and the potential for prolapse.

Prolapsed uterus surgery

Luckily for sufferers, prolapsed uterus surgery can be an effective way to repair damage and reduce uterus pain without the need for a traumatic hysterectomy. Mr Jonathan Broome is an experienced surgeon who can offer advice from the perspective of a very experienced gynaecologist.

If prolapse is affecting your life, get in touch with us to see how The Pelvic Clinic can help you.

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