Uterine prolapse occurs when the uterus or womb from its normal position falls or descends into the vaginal canal and may even protrude to the outside in the case of a very advanced stage, although this is not frequent. It is a condition that is more commonly seen in women who have had multiple children, who have undergone complicated childbirth, and who are between 40 and 60 years of age. To avoid complications and ensure the excellent health of the female reproductive system, it is essential to put yourself in the hands of a specialist at the first symptoms to take the appropriate measures and follow the proper treatment. At FastlyHealwe, explain in detail what are the causes, symptoms, and treatment of uterine prolapse.
Causes of uterine prolapse
The uterus is an organ supported by muscles, special ligaments, and other structures in the pelvis. However, when these tissues are excessively weakened, the uterus can change position and descend considerably into the vaginal canal, called a prolapse. This condition can occur for different reasons, but the most common cause is the trauma suffered in childbirth, during which there can be significant musculoskeletal alterations in the area. This is especially the case in multiple births, large or heavy babies, complicated or too frequent deliveries.
In addition to this, other causes of uterine prolapse or factors that can lead to it are:
- Menopause: in this stage, the female body undergoes essential changes due to the decrease in estrogen levels, and among these can be the loss of muscle tone and weakness of the pelvic floor, which increases the risk of uterine proliferation.
- Obesity: When you are overweight, there is greater tension in those supporting muscles of the pelvis, increasing the chances of suffering a prolapse.
- Other conditions that can cause excessive pressure on these muscles and, consequently, their weakness are chronic constipation and prolonged cough that does not stop.
- Although it is rare, uterine prolapse can be caused by a tumor in the pelvis.
- In addition, it should be noted that women at birth have more significant connective tissue weakness, so this, added to conditions or factors such as the above, makes them more vulnerable to prolapse.
Degrees of uterine prolapse
Based on how severe the uterine prolapse is, a 4-degree classification is established, which specialists will take into account in the diagnosis to determine what treatment each patient should follow:
- Grade 1: the descent of the uterus is slight and does not reach the entrance to the vagina.
- Grade 2: the prolapse is moderate and reaches the entrance to the vagina.
- Grade 3: The prolapse is severe, and the uterus protrudes from the entrance to the vagina. In this case, the patient may notice the lump when touching or walking, especially if she carries out physical efforts.
- Grade 4: the prolapse is total, and the uterus is entirely outside the vagina.
Symptoms of uterine prolapse
The symptoms that women who suffer from uterine prolapse usually experience are the following:
- The sensation of pressure or heaviness in the pelvic region or vagina.
- Notice the presence of a foreign body in the vagina.
- Pains in the lower part of the belly.
- Lumbago or pain in the lower back.
- Protrusion (displacement) of the uterus towards the vaginal opening.
- More abundant vaginal discharge.
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding
- Pain or discomfort during sexual intercourse (dyspareunia).
- Urine leaks or the urge to urinate frequently and suddenly.
Bladder disorders are more familiar with uterine prolapse, leading to urinary tract infections. It is also important to note that the symptoms mentioned may be aggravated or accentuated when the woman sits, stands for an extended period, performs the physical exercise, or carries heavy objects.
Treatment of uterine prolapse
Suppose symptoms such as the above are experienced. In that case, it is essential to go to the doctor or gynecologist as soon as possible to receive a safe diagnosis and initiate the appropriate treatment. And it is that this will depend, as we have commented, on the degree of severity in which the prolapse is found and other factors such as the age of the patient, her state of health, the desire to have children in the future, etc.
In mild or moderate prolapse (grades 1 and 2), conservative treatment is carried out to keep symptoms under control and relieve associated discomfort. In this sense, the specialist may recommend measures such as the following:
- Follow estrogen treatment for women who have recently undergone menopause and have suffered from vaginal atrophy and weakness in the pelvic floor muscles.
- If the patient is overweight or obese, she should start a personalized weight loss plan and follow a balanced, healthy, low-fat diet to maintain a weight appropriate to her condition and health.
- Performing exercises that strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, such as the so-called Kegel exercises, can help improve mild cases of prolapse and prevent its progression and complication.
- It is also advisable to avoid making great physical efforts and lifting or carrying hefty objects.
- In some women, the specialist may consider using a pessary, a screw-shaped device inserted into the vagina to help hold the uterus in position. The patient should be told how to use this device in this case.
In contrast, surgery is usually necessary to correct the severe or total prolapse (grades 3 and 4). There are specific surgical procedures, such as sacrospinous fixation, utilizing which the uterus can be held and kept in its original position with the help of nearby ligaments; however, in other cases, a hysterectomy may be required, that is, the removal of the uterus or part of it.
This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to Uterine prolapse: causes, symptoms, and treatment, we recommend that you enter our category of Female reproductive system.
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.