Posterior vaginal prolapse (rectocele)

Posterior vaginal prolapse (rectocele)

Posterior vaginal prolapse is the weakening of the supportive tissue between the rectum & the vaginal wall. This results in stretching of the tissue and eventual bulging of the vaginal wall and is also known as rectocele. Treatment for a mild posterior vaginal prolapse includes a conservative non-surgical treatment; while, severe cases of rectocele might require a surgical intervention.

Typically, there is an excessive strain on the vaginal muscles supporting the pelvic organs during vaginal childbirth leading to excessive stretching or weakening. While a small prolapse may be imperceptible, a large one will result in a noticeable bulge of tissue through the vaginal opening; though uncomfortable, the bulge is rarely painful.

Symptoms of Posterior Vaginal Prolapse

  • Bulge of tissue protruding from the vaginal opening
  • The difficulty of bowel movement
  • Rectal pressure or fullness
  • The feeling of incomplete bowel voiding
  • Sexual inhibitions
Causes of Posterior Vaginal Prolapse

  • Vaginal childbirth
  • Obesity & weight gain
  • Frequent heavy lifting
  • Chronic cough
  • Straining during bowel movement

Posterior vaginal prolapse can be prevented with regular practice of Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor, this is specially recommended after childbirth. Consumption of high-fibre foods & liquids is also recommended as a treatment for frequent constipation, while avoiding lifting of heavy weights is recommended. And if required, they must be lifted in the right manner & posture.

Risks of Posterior Vaginal Prolapse

  • Childbirth
  • Increasing age
  • Excessive weight gain
  • Weakened vaginal muscles