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prolapse repair surgery

Preparing yourself for prolapse repair surgery

Having surgery of any size can be a worrying thing and it is understandable that you will feel anxious or nervous before coming in for your treatment. Though it is important to remind yourself that, here at The Pelvic Clinic, we believe that prolapse repair surgery is the best option for the majority of people who suffer from a prolapse. It is also important to familiarise yourself with the process and be reassured by knowing what is involved.

Going in for surgical treatment is never an easy thing, but there are simple ways to prepare yourself mentally for what lies ahead. We’ll list some of the best ones here in today’s blog post.

1. Knowing what your treatment will involve can help to allay a great number of misguided fears surrounding your surgery. Find out all the information you need about the particular kind of operation that is going to be performed. By reading about the surgery yourself, you can be reassured that surgeons are experienced, such as Mr Jonathan Broome, who has performed over 1,000 procedures to return pelvic organs to their correct position.

2. Discuss your worries with a professional or family and friends. Often the biggest worries about surgery come from overthinking the situation and can be solved by having a conversation with a healthcare professional or someone close to you. Talking through what is making you anxious will almost certainly result in the issue seeming much lesser than it was. The prolapse surgery is straightforward and safe and it always helps to have a support network to remind you of that.

3. Think ahead to the life that this surgery will give you. Because it is performed laparoscopically, without any large incisions in your abdomen, prolapse repair surgery is a very quick and easy procedure, and usually requires only one night in hospital. It won’t be long until you are out and about again, and once you have recovered you can enjoy the benefits and peace of mind that follow.

And remember, don’t hesitate to contact us if you want more information on the prolapse repair surgery or answers to any other questions you might have.

How friends and family can help you recover from prolapse repair surgery

At The Pelvic Clinic, we pride ourselves on offering excellent care before, during and after our patients’ sacrohysteropexy surgeries. The prolapse repair surgery that we offer is straightforward and safe, but it’s still important to ensure that our patients are looked after properly. If you’ve suffered a prolapse, you can rest assured that we’ll give you the best care possible. However, once you leave the hospital, your family and friends will need to provide you with the care you need so that you can fully recover from your operation. Ergo, you may be wondering what practical things they can do to help you.

There are several ways friends and family can offer practical care following a sacrohysteropexy operation. We’ll list some of the most common ones in today’s blog entry.

1. Driving

You won’t be able to drive immediately after a sacrohysteropexy. In fact, it may take a few weeks before you are able to drive comfortably. Friends and family members can help you a great deal during this period simply by driving for you. They can either take you as a passenger whenever you need to go out or run errands for you that you can’t perform without driving somewhere.

2. Carrying heavy loads

During the recovery period, we strongly recommend that you don’t lift (or try to move) any heavy objects. Friends and relatives can assist you by carrying heavy bags of grocery shopping and other loads when necessary.

3. Helping around the house

There may be some household chores that you can’t undertake during your sacrohysteropexy recovery. Luckily, you don’t have to: your friends and family can step in to take over some of your chores and keep your home clean, tidy and liveable until you have fully recovered.

Having a support network of family and friends can be very beneficial when recovering from any type of operation (including a sacrohysteropexy). Don’t be afraid to ask for their help whenever you need assistance during your recovery. Furthermore, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you want more information on the prolapse repair surgery we offer or the recovery period that follows this surgery.

four stages of prolapse

How severe is your prolapse?

As you are probably aware, all prolapses are deeply unpleasant and can be very embarrassing. However, you may not realise that some are more severe than others. There are several different and distinct degrees of severity. The higher degrees are worse than the lower degrees, but all of them are treatable with appropriate prolapse repair surgery. Here at The Pelvic Clinic, we believe that it’s important for you to know about these different degrees of severity. If you know how severe your prolapse is, you can make a fully informed choice regarding the course of action you want to take.

1. First-degree prolapse

First-degree prolapses are the least extreme type. You may feel some discomfort or pain if you have a first-degree prolapse, but there is also a chance that you won’t. Basically, a first-degree prolapse can be characterised as a prolapse where the cervix has fallen into the vagina but not dropped any further. If you discover that you have this type of prolapse, you should seek medical treatment, even if it isn’t causing you discomfort. However, you shouldn’t panic. While you need medical treatment, you may not need it urgently. Ar this stage, it is always helpful to have some intensive physiotherapy to see of this can repair the pelvic floor muscles.

2. Second-degree prolapse

In this type of prolapse, the cervix hasn’t simply dropped down into the vagina: it has descended to the level of the vaginal opening. This type of prolapse is more likely to cause discomfort or pain than a first-degree prolapse and may prove to be a more a serious problem if it is left untreated for too long. We recommend seeking medical treatment and considering the possibility of prolapse repair surgery as soon as you find out that you have this type of prolapse.

3. Third-degree prolapse

If you have this type of prolapse, it is imperative that you seek medical treatment and start preparing for prolapse repair without delay. This type of prolapse can be very painful and can seriously damage your quality of life if it isn’t treated. It may also develop into a fourth-degree prolapse.

4. Fourth-degree prolapse or ‘procidentia’

In this type of prolapse, the cervix and uterus both drop to outside of the vagina. This condition may be extremely painful and even debilitating. It must not be left untreated and should be redressed using prolapse repair surgery. If you have this type of prolapse, you should deal with it urgently.

Regardless of how severe your prolapse is, Mr Broome has the expertise and experience to offer you appropriate treatment. Contact The Pelvic Clinic today for more information.

pelvic floor repair

Five fibrous foods that help prevent prolapses

Constipation is a very common cause of uterine prolapse. However, constipation is completely preventable. In fact, it’s easier to prevent than any of the other issues that can lead to a prolapse. All you need is fibre! Here on The Pelvic Clinic blog, we often advise our readers to get more fibre in their diets in order to prevent constipation and help avoid prolapse. But what foods should you eat to increase the amount of fibre that goes into your body, and how can you make sure you get enough of them?

1. Beans and pulses

Beans and pulses are a fantastic source of fibre. They are also incredibly versatile ingredients. They can be used in a wide variety of dishes, ranging from chillies and curries to casseroles and pies. Simply incorporating beans and pulses into meals you already cook and enjoy regularly is a simple way to boost the amount of fibre in your diet.

2. Dried fruits and nuts

Dried fruits and nuts contain high concentrations of fibre. What’s more, they’re delicious and easily portable, which makes them ideal high-fibre snacks. If you don’t always have time to cook high-fibre meals, carrying around some dried fruit or some nuts to snack on is a fantastic alternative.

3. Porridge and bran-based cereals

Breakfast is a great time to introduce fibre into your diet. If you’re not sure about what you’ll be eating throughout the day, eat some porridge or a bran-based cereal for breakfast. Not only are these breakfast options high in fibre, they’re also very healthy in other ways.

4. Wholemeal pasta and wholegrain rice

While white rices and pastas aren’t very high in fibre, their wholegrain and wholemeal equivalents are. If you use a lot of white rice or pasta in your cooking, why not substitute it for wholemeal pasta or wholegrain rice? It’s an easy way to increase the amount of fibre in your diet without completely altering the meals you eat, and you’ll hardly notice the switch.

5. Jacket potatoes

Potatoes are a staple of the British diet, but did you know that their skins are very high in fibre? Next time you eat a jacket potato, remember to eat the skin, too.

Here at The Pelvic Clinic, we know that your diet can help you prevent a prolapse or recover from prolapse repair surgery. By eating more of the foods we’ve mentioned in today’s blog, you can increase the amount of fibre in your diet and therefore prevent constipation. If you avoid constipation, you can eliminate one of the risks of suffering a prolapse or difficulty recovering from one. Want to find out more about prolapse surgery? Contact us today.

different body shapes pelvic repair surgery

Prolapse prevention tips for heavier individuals

Here at The Pelvic Clinic, we often advise prolapse sufferers (and people who are at risk of prolapse) to take steps to manage their weight. Extra bodyweight can put a strain on the pelvic floor and make it harder to avoid or recover from a prolapse. However, we also understand that not everyone is in a position to limit their weight. Some people are naturally bigger than others, while others simply aren’t successful when it comes to dieting. It’s also inadvisable for individuals who are recovering from eating disorders to attempt to restrict their weight, in case it triggers a relapse.

If you aren’t able to lose weight, there’s no need to panic. There are plenty of other things you can do to prevent a prolapse; here are just three tips for everyday exercises:

1. Performing pelvic exercises

Extra weight can strain your pelvic floor, so it’s a good idea to strengthen it to counteract this strain. There are plenty of exercises that can help you do this. For example, wall squats, jumping jacks and crunches are all fantastic for building up your pelvic muscles. If you can’t perform more strenuous exercises (or think they might trigger a prolapse), its worth doing ordinary, gentle forms of exercise instead. Walking and cycling can improve your overall physical fitness and make your pelvic floor stronger.

2. Getting more fibre in your diet

Ensuring that you get enough fibre in your diet can drastically reduce your risk of prolapse. Fibre makes it easier to pass solid waste, thereby reducing the strain on your pelvic floor whenever you use the bathroom. If you’re carrying a little extra weight, this may help balance out the effect of the strain this weight puts on your pelvic floor. So eat plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and grains.

3. Avoiding heavy lifting

Avoid putting additional strain on your pelvic muscles by not lifting heavy objects. Lifting heavy objects on a regular basis can put more of a strain on your pelvic floor than being overweight, so it’s best to avoid this kind of lifting if you want to reduce your risk of a prolapse.

Of course, individuals of average weight can also use these methods to reduce their risk of prolapse. However, it’s particularly important for heavier individuals to put them into practice. Contact us for more information about prolapse prevention and prolapse repair surgery.

 

recovery after prolapse

Getting your life back after prolapse repair surgery

If you have been suffering from chronic pain as a result of a prolapse, your life may have been significantly disrupted. Pain can prevent you from carrying out day-to-day activities and doing things that you normally enjoy. Consequently, an untreated prolapse can completely change the way you live your life. Here at The Pelvic Clinic, we understand that, following prolapse repair surgery, physical recuperation is only the first stage of the recovery process. The second stage is getting your life back. To help with this crucial second stage, we’ve decided to provide you with some tips that will help you get back to normal life following a prolapse.

1. Make a point of meeting up with friends

If you lived with a prolapse for a long time before seeking prolapse repair surgery, the pain may have prevented you from pursuing an active social life. We recommend that you schedule meetings with your friends as soon as you feel well enough. Try to pursue social activities with them that you enjoyed before your life was disrupted by a prolapse. This will help you get used to going out with friends and enjoying a rich social life again.

2. Practice gentle exercises

Doing gentle exercises can help you recover physically after receiving prolapse repair surgery. However, it can also help restore your confidence and sense of autonomy. Taking control of your body again while recovering from a prolapse can be psychologically beneficial. Once you have built up your confidence and sense of self-determination, you will find it much easier to take charge of your life and get back to normal.

3. Get back to work gradually

If you’ve had to take a lot of time off work due to the pain caused by your prolapse, you may find it hard to get back into the rhythm of the working day. We recommend that you don’t push yourself too hard. Go back to work when you feel ready, but don’t feel obliged to take on all your old responsibilities straight away. Talk to your employers about gradually increasing the hours you work or the responsibilities you have over a period of a couple of weeks. This will give you chance to reacclimatise yourself to the working environment. You will have the chance to build yourself up until you are able to take on your old role.

Here at The Pelvic Clinic, we believe that recovering your life is just as important as recovering your health after prolapse repair surgery. Feel free to get in touch with us for more information.

prolapse repair surgery

Prolapse: Why Hysterectomy Is Not The Answer

Hysterectomy is a common operation in the UK, with almost 50,000 women undergoing the procedure each year. Sometimes it is performed for prolapse of the uterus but there are many reasons why a hysterectomy can be performed. Although the operation should be a safe procedure, there is a risk of complications occurring at a later stage – often years down the line. Here’s what you need to know about hysterectomy for prolapse repair surgery and potential effects it could have on your body.

What is a hysterectomy?

Hysterectomy is the process of removing the womb and uterus via surgery. Depending on the reasons why procedure is necessary, either the full womb will be removed or only parts of it will be removed.

Why might a woman need a hysterectomy?

Medical conditions that affect the reproductive system may result in a hysterectomy being necessary. This includes problems such as heavy periods, prolapse, chronic pelvic pain, fibroids and cancer of the ovaries, uterus, cervix or fallopian tubes.

What are the potential risks and side effects of hysterectomy?

Immediate risks with the surgery include heavy bleeding, bowel or bladder damage and, as with all major operations, infection or a bad reaction to the general anaesthetic. Recovery tends to take between eight weeks to 3 months and it is extremely important to take this time to rest and allow the body to heal.

Women who have had a full hysterectomy can expect to go through the menopause almost immediately since their bodies will stop producing oestrogen as the ovaries are removed. Those who have one or both of their ovaries left can expect to go through menopause within around five years.

However, what is overlooked, is the fact that a hysterectomy may not be the answer to the problem of prolapsed uterus.

If you think you have a prolapse, then here are a few common symptoms:

– A feeling of pressure or heaviness in the vagina
– A noticeable bulge or protrusion
– Spotting (light bleeding)
– Being unable to retain a tampon
– Loss of intimate sensation
– Urine leaks, inability to empty the bladder or frequent need to urinate

What can I do about my prolapse?

Prolapse surgery is often the best way to fix a prolapsed organ, particularly if the prolapse is very severe. There is a much easier operation to have, a Sacrohysterpexy which uses a laparoscopic approach to hoist the uterus back into position permanently with the use of mesh. Women have gone onto have children after this procedure with no ill effects whatsoever. The sacrohysteropexy operation is a uterus sparing procedure so sparing women from many of the unpleasant side effects of a hysterectomy. Many women who have prolapse repair surgery with a sacrohysteropexy find that their quality of life is significantly improved as they no longer suffer the pain and discomfort that prolapse causes.

For more information on prolapse surgery after hysterectomy, contact The Pelvic Clinic today.

 

How Sacrohysteropexy Can Transform You

sacrohysteropexy

Contrary to popular belief, the pelvic floor doesn’t consist just of muscle but also nerves, blood vessels, ligaments and connective tissue. If any of these structures becomes damaged, problems with support of the pelvic organs can result.

Up to nearly a third of women can be affected by a prolapse of the pelvic organs – a weakening of the tissues supporting the pelvic organs. It causes a number of symptoms, from problems during intercourse, a frequent need to pass urine, backache and recurrent urinary infections. Another issue can be stress incontinence when coughing, exercising or laughing.

The causes of a prolapse are equally varied, but two of the main ones include childbirth (responsible for around half of all prolapses) and hysterectomy. There is also some evidence that prolapses can run in families, while the menopause can also be a factor, as can constant straining resulting from chronic coughing or constipation.

While there are other solutions available, such as a vaginal pessary or support device, or oestrogens given to enhance the quality of the tissue, the most common form of treatment is to have surgery. That’s especially true when symptoms linger and are starting to affect a person’s quality of life.

Prolapse repair surgery is particularly recommended for women who have already tried prescribed pessaries, pelvic floor exercises, stopping smoking (to stop coughs) and weight loss, if that was needed.

What is a sacrohysteropexy?

Sacrohysteropexy is the name for the operation that will put your uterus back into its regular position. Only a very limited number of gynaecological surgeons will conduct this operation, and many GPs are not even aware that it is an option for treating a pelvic prolapse.

Unfortunately, in many cases, family doctors will instead put their patients forward for a hysterectomy. But, with a sacrohysteropexy, the woman keeps their uterus and so can go on to have children, or more children, if that is what they wish to do. That’s what makes a sacrohysteropexy a more agreeable form of pelvic floor repair surgery.

How it works

A keyhole surgical procedure is able to restore normality through the use of flexible mesh, which is used as a type of sling to hold the uterus in the right place permanently.

Because this is a laparascopical or keyhole procedure, no large incisions have to be made, so patients are not left with big scars on their stomach. The incisions fade over time, and are a lot less noticeable than conventional stomach scars. Instead, tiny incisions are made through which instruments can be fed, to the left of your tummy button, in the belly button and along the bikini line. The surgeon is then able to look around the pelvis via a screen.

A mesh, designed not to break down once it’s in the body, and which can stop scar tissue from forming, is inserted through the bikini line before one end is attached to the back of the cervix with minuscule needles. The other end is fixed to the tailbone with metal staples. The mesh encourages tissue growth, and doesn’t ever need to be fixed with further surgery – it can stay in place indefinitely.

As a laparoscopic procedure, sacrohysteropexy can be done very quickly under a general anaesthetic. Healing time is also very rapid for the small incisions, and what’s more, given that patients have a number of smaller cuts rather than a single big incision, pain and post-surgical discomfort are greatly reduced.

In no time at all, you will be on your feet and able to move around. No lengthy hospital stays are needed. One night away from home is usually all you will need to make a full recovery.