A vaginal prolapse occurs when the support ligaments to the womb or vagina become too weak to work effectively.
This is when the front wall of the vagina bulges because of a failure to the bladder support.
This is when there is a bulge of the back wall of the vagina causing the rectum to bulge through.
This is when the supports to the womb fail and it drops down through the vagina.
This is when the top of the vagina drops down after a hysterectomy.
As we get older the elasticity of our tissues lessens which increases the risk of prolapse. After the menopause the low oestrogen levels also weaken the tissues and reduce the elasticity.
This stresses the ligaments and supports of the vagina and womb. Caesareans do not prevent this, but, obviously a long, difficult or traumatic vaginal delivery increases the risk of developing prolapse and incontinence.
Sometimes prolapse has an increased risk in families. Also there are certain conditions that increase the likelihood of prolapse eg Ehlers-Danlos syndrome., Marfan’s syndrome, joint hypermobility syndrome.
These obviously will have an influence on prolpase because of the increased pressure.
Fibroids or ovarian cysts can also create extra pelvic pressure which can increase the risk of prolapse.
A job involving heavy lifting will put extra stress on a prolpase.
There is an increased risk of prolapse in women with, for example a chronic cough, or chronic constipation.
A prolpased vagina can cause the following symptoms:
Several things can reduce your risk of developing prolpase: