Pelvic organ prolapse refers to the descent of one or more of your pelvic organs (bladder, bowel or uterus) into the vagina. This occurs when the connective tissue supporting the organs fails. Up to 50% of women who have had children will have a pelvic organ prolapse, although not all will have symptoms.
Typical prolapse symptoms include a heavy or dragging feeling in the pelvis, a "lump" in the vagina, and difficulty with emptying the bladder or bowels. Symptoms are often worse after being on your feet for longer.
Pelvic organ prolapse can be treated by managing aggravating factors (eg, preventing constipation, stopping heavy lifting), doing pelvic floor muscle exercises to improve support under the pelvic organs and using a support pessary in the vagina. A GP may also prescribe topical oestrogen cream, which is helpful for some. Some with pelvic organ prolapse may require surgery.