Non-Surgical Treatments for Pelvic Organ Prolapse
For women living with pelvic prolapse, the discomfort and pain can be limiting. Fortunately, first-line therapies that do not include surgery have helped restore quality of life for many women.
The muscles of the pelvic floor are vital to keeping your pelvic organs in place. When women experience pelvic floor muscle weakness, prolapse and urinary incontinence often become an issue. Physical therapists teach you how to perform pelvic floor exercises that will help tighten these important muscles. These exercises are often used to treat mild cases of prolapse or in conjunction with other prolapse treatment modalities.
Your physical therapist may use biofeedback, where monitoring devices with sensors can show on a computer screen whether you are using the correct muscles to perform a pelvic floor muscle exercise. The physical therapist will also be able to see the strength of each muscle contraction as you perform the exercise to ensure you are performing the exercises properly.
A vaginal pessary is a small device that is placed inside of the vagina to support the vagina and reinforce the pelvic floor muscles and surrounding pelvic organs. The pessary is a safe, minimally-invasive option for women and typically will relieve most, if not all, symptoms of prolapse.
For certain women, your doctor may prescribe estrogen replacement therapy using a transvaginal estrogen cream to help strengthen the muscles and tissues in and around the vagina. Women naturally stop producing estrogen after menopause so estrogen replacement may provide relief. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of this treatment and, based on your medical history and health, will determine if this option is right for you.