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Pelvic Organ Prolapse, Support Thread - Page 4

post #61 of 1498
Someting I have been thinking about is the babymoon. The actual rest period, lying-in with baby for a full 6 weeks. I know how hard that is with our modern society, distant relatives (both physically and emotionally), multiple children, moms back to work soon PP...the list goes on. BUT this is fundamental to propper physical healing. And I can't help but draw a correlation between our lack of propper after-care (in some Euro countries the mom has massages at her home, nursing/baby help, house help standard, covered by the health care system-they really value families!) and pelvic organ prolapse, postpartum depression and low breastfeeding rates.

We all know a well taken care of mom is a mom that is able to take good care of her babe.
post #62 of 1498
Zoo Loo, I very much agree. I have a good friend who is Vietnamese and they have the 40 days in bed and since she is quite americanized she and her husband fought the relatives and said screw it... they talk about how ridiculous it is and how it would drive a woman crazy... and I just wish I'd had the opportunity! I think my POP is directly related to a severe cough I developed about 2 weeks PP, which lasted and lasted and was a very violent cough... I was feeling so *good* before that and then BLAM my guts were falling out. I'm sure it didn't help the diastasis either. YUCKO. ah well.
post #63 of 1498
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by debsdancer View Post
Zoo Loo, I very much agree. I have a good friend who is Vietnamese and they have the 40 days in bed and since she is quite americanized she and her husband fought the relatives and said screw it... they talk about how ridiculous it is and how it would drive a woman crazy... and I just wish I'd had the opportunity! I think my POP is directly related to a severe cough I developed about 2 weeks PP, which lasted and lasted and was a very violent cough... I was feeling so *good* before that and then BLAM my guts were falling out. I'm sure it didn't help the diastasis either. YUCKO. ah well.
I totally agree w/you. I sooooooo wanted/needed more time in bed to recuperate. With 4 kids, that just wasn't happening. I rested when I could, but do not think I got nearly enough.

It's funny that you should mention the cough - that is exactly what set mine off too. By 2-3 months pp I felt pretty well, no more stress incontinence. Then about 8 months later I got a hacking cough and it all came back worse than ever. Ahhh, the world of POP..........
post #64 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoo Loo Naturals View Post
Someting I have been thinking about is the babymoon. The actual rest period, lying-in with baby for a full 6 weeks. I know how hard that is with our modern society, distant relatives (both physically and emotionally), multiple children, moms back to work soon PP...the list goes on. BUT this is fundamental to propper physical healing. And I can't help but draw a correlation between our lack of propper after-care (in some Euro countries the mom has massages at her home, nursing/baby help, house help standard, covered by the health care system-they really value families!) and pelvic organ prolapse, postpartum depression and low breastfeeding rates.

We all know a well taken care of mom is a mom that is able to take good care of her babe.
You've made an excellent point. We should lobby our insurance companies for them to cover pp recovery up to at least 6 weeks. Nannies, housekeeper, he!! even a personal chef would be wonderful!!! If we received that kind of pp care: POP would be very rare!

debsdancer
Smokers who have never had babies experience POP because their coughing so hard all the time. Same with sneezing, I use to hold my sneezes in b/c I didn't want to spray germs everywhere. PT says its harmful to do that. The force of a sneeze is equivalent to 70 mph wind. You hold that in, it'll blow your insides out!

My POP didn't get really bad until 7wks pp when I had a UTI. The burn from peeing sent my body into an involuntary pushing mode. I could not control it. I was literally pushing my bladder out of my body! I did get a anti-spazmotic drug which calmed down the uncontrollable urge to bare down. That was the breaking point for me.:
post #65 of 1498
I have the Interstitial Cystitis and the vaginal/rectum cystocele. Years ago my mom used Sepia homeopathics, and the next Dr visit, the OB swore she had surgery since her uterus have moved up so much. I haven't tried that yet. I practice Pelvic floor kegels and certin special tummy exercises that don't push out the uterus, like regular crunches can. Caffine makes it so much worse for me, but I need : in the morning.

http://evenbetternow.com/ This explains the book for interstitial cystitis. This book was found by my mom an HHP, and seemed very cool.
post #66 of 1498
WOW, thanks for the link! It has so much great info

I have IC and I'm so glad to have found this link!!!

Its great to hear the Sepia worked for your mother. My cervix has gone way up too and I've taked sepia. Maybe its the thing that helped. Glad to hear someone else had the same luck. Birth&Bunnies Its great to meet you!
post #67 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by querico View Post
Hi everybody. Feeling better today, physically and mentally.
I saw a new OB/GYN today who was very reassuring.
He said to not even think of the future or surgery right now. His feeling was that until I stop breastfeeding and menstruate again, there is no way to say what will happen. He said he has seen women with severe prolapses completely resolve after a year or so- mentioned "not even being able to find them". Again, he explained that nursing blocks the circulation of estrogen, which is vital to vaginal healing and restoration. He said that this was not a reason to stop nursing, but important to keep in mind when I feel frustrated.
He also said that if a very thorough exam is done on all women after delivering vaginally, you could find some type of pelvic prolapse in 75% of women in the first 6 months post partum! this makes the condition seem so much more "normal". He did add that they are usually grade 1-2, and mine is a 3, but I still felt reassured.
He doesn't want to see me back until I have stopped breastfeeding for 3 months, and then would like to take a look.
(I am 10 wks PP now.)

thanks for the support!
Hello! I'm also part of the prolapse clan. I am 7 months pp. I have a grade 1 uterine prolapse and sometimes I feel "normal," but like other pp's, sometimes it bothers me and gives me that low tampon feeling in my vagina. I'm hoping that time will still help me heal.

I think I got my prolapse when I was pushing during birth. I only pushed for about an hour, but for some reason, in between pushing, I was holding (flexing) my kegal muscles because I didn't want to lose the progress I'd made and have the baby come back inside (similar to pushing out a BM that takes some effort... sorry). At the time, I thought, "I'm the strongest lady ever - able to focus, push and then keep holding in between!" In hindsight, not a good idea. Also, I was so amazed by how awesome and not tired I felt after giving birth, that on day two, I was up making homemade vegetable soup and was probably on my feet longer than I should be. I agree with what pp's have said - midwives need to warn about this more. You hear, "Take it easy," but not, "...because if you don't, your cervix might fall out of your body." I noticed my prolapse about a week after giving birth. My cervix was poking out of my vagina just a tiny bit and I kept thinking it was a clot that needed to come out. (this might be TMI...) I even tugged at it a little bit because I thought I could help the "clot" out, but then I realized it looked like real tissue.

My midwife referred me to a great PT, who I saw for about a month, but aside from being an hour away, it was really expensive too and my insurance didn't cover it (isn't insurance great?). I went enough times to get some good take home exercises out of it, but I wish I could've kept up with it. We did a lot of pilates work on a reformed and mostly mat work. I have not kept up with the exercises at home because at the end of a long, busy day, the last thing I want to do is pelvic floor exercises! But, since it's been bugging me a bit more the past few days, I need to make it a priority.

Like other posters, I feel like my body is a wreck. I also have a nagging little hemorhhoid and even though I'm back at my pre-pregnancy weight, my lower abdomen feels stretched out (go figure). After I eat, it looks like I have a mini pregnant belly. I'm thinking that time and doing more abdominal exercises will help that. Again, I need to to make it a priority.

It's depressing to think that my body's failing me. And, it makes me a little nervous for having another baby. What kinds of risks will it put me at? What if my uterus DOES actually come out of my body while I'm pregnant? Also, it's no fun to be walking around with things feeling like they're hanging out of your vagina and anus.

I quoted the above post because I thought it was very helpful. I can't imagine that every woman doesn't experience prolapse of some degree after labor. When I first got pregnant, my midwife told me that I had a really low cervix, so I also think that perhaps if I had a "normal" cervix, I might not even feel this prolapse.

And, it seems so strange that breastfeeding inhibits our body's ability to heal itself after birth when breastfeeding is what nature intended us to do... interesting. I usually feel like nature is so smart, but that one just doesn't make sense to me. Maybe the reason we need everything to be loosey goosey while breastfeeding it to allow our nipples to be yanked on without hurting!

Sorry this is so long - thanks for this wonderful thread. It's good to know I'm not alone.

BTW - can someone explain a cystocele and a rectocele to me?
post #68 of 1498
You know happy2bamama, I tell pushing mamas that are concerned about not making progress when they are pushing and the baby is coming down during and going up after/between contraction/pushing efforts that the baby is "paving the way". New ground, making a route, loosening things up as you will. Perfectly natural, very common and always amazing to witness.

And yes, midwives do need to be talking more straight talk. No one benefits from a sugar coated approach. Women need the truth.



And my personal feelings are that we need more family. More of the grandmothers babying the mamas while they become mothers. It really strikes a cord in our society. We are birthing and rearing offspring to become independant. We value that so much in the industrialized world. We need to be more community oriented to ensure the health and well being off our people, our mamas, our babies and our families. I also advocate for fathers-we need to attach to our kids.

But I digress...
post #69 of 1498
how is this thread here right when I need it?
post #70 of 1498
Quote:
BTW - can someone explain a cystocele and a rectocele to me?
Well, google will give you gobs but basically...

A cystocele is a bladder prolapse (with or without incontenance) and a rectocele is a rectal prolapse (may or may not protrude from the anus).
post #71 of 1498
A cystocele is when the bladder bulges into the vagina, a rectocele is when the rectum bulges into the vagina.

Someone above asked about diagnosis. Unless you specifically complain of symptoms, it is unlikely that you will be diagnosed with prolapse in a routine exam for a couple of reasons. First, a lot of women have some degree of prolapse but are asymptomatic. Also, while lying down, most prolapses are not as evident - they are much easier to diagnose during a standing exam. My doctors never checked my vaginal strength postpartum - I think it is really irresponsible.

You can self-diagnose pretty easily. While standing, do a vaginal exam. Your vagina should be pretty much a straight shot to your cervix. If your cervix is low, or you feel any bulges in the way, you might be prolapsed.
post #72 of 1498
It's in the TMI category, BUT when I have to go #2, I stick my clean thumb into my vagina to plop the BM out Works like a charm, if I don't do that it really hard to empty it all out since the angle is all wrong.
post #73 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birth&Bunnies View Post
It's in the TMI category, BUT when I have to go #2, I stick my clean thumb into my vagina to plop the BM out Works like a charm, if I don't do that it really hard to empty it all out since the angle is all wrong.
Wow! A woman's gotta do what a woman's gotta do.

I started taking Sepia today, so I'll let you guys know if I feel a difference. I also started kegeling more too. But I have to be careful because I've been known to kegel a lot and then blow out my pelvic floor muscles which actually makes my prolapse feel worse. When I want to do something, I want to do it, so I have to make sure to go slow with the kegels.
post #74 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birth&Bunnies View Post
It's in the TMI category, BUT when I have to go #2, I stick my clean thumb into my vagina to plop the BM out Works like a charm, if I don't do that it really hard to empty it all out since the angle is all wrong.
I believe the medical term for that (and it's more common than you'd think) is "splinting". It's one of the questions they ask when they are trying to determine if a prolapse interfers with your quality of life - "do you have to 'splint' to evacuate your bowels?" Can I snicker at how prissy that sounds?
post #75 of 1498
Last year my pelvic exam showed my uterus was not prolapsed. However, the cystocele in which ever version I specifically have, is why I think the anus isn't lined up correctly for a normal BM. I also had a lot of BM trouble as a little kid and I think my colon/anal area is streched out from years of larger than average BMs. My maternal history has a pattern of prolapse, but my mom has worked on her self with homeopathics and such so I was more aware to avoid certain exasterbasting things i.e. stomach crunches. I suck in for stomach exercises and then I lay on my back, legs together and slowly move my legs back and forth using my stomach muscles, and avoiding the pushing out feeling from crunches. And kegels of course.
post #76 of 1498
"[QUOTE=Zoo Loo Naturals;8813559]Someting I have been thinking about is the babymoon. The actual rest period, lying-in with baby for a full 6 weeks. I know how hard that is with our modern society, distant relatives (both physically and emotionally), multiple children, moms back to work soon PP...the list goes on. BUT this is fundamental to propper physical healing. And I can't help but draw a correlation between our lack of propper after-care (in some Euro countries the mom has massages at her home, nursing/baby help, house help standard, covered by the health care system-they really value families!) and pelvic organ prolapse, postpartum depression and low breastfeeding rates."

I so wish I had a serious rest period.
I thought i was superwoman after achieving my much desired VBAC. I felt like after having birthed my babe after a 26 hour labor I could do anything, so I got out there at the end of the first week and was walking to central park, meeting people joyfully, but forgot to let myself rest. At the 3 wk point my adrenaline and my body crashed, and I realized something wasn't right. That is when I discovered my cystocele,(grade 3) and my image of my powerful self was squashed.

There is no telling if I made it worse by not resting, but I don't think it helped. I'm really trying to listen to my body now and be patient and ask for help when I need it. I struggle with discomfort every day. Afternoons into evenings are when it falls lower and my symptoms are worse. I had some improvement, and now seem to have taken a step backwards. But it seems that this is nature of what we are dealing with.

Welcome to all of the new women who have signed on here.:
post #77 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by happy2bamama View Post
my lower abdomen feels stretched out (go figure). After I eat, it looks like I have a mini pregnant belly. I'm thinking that time and doing more abdominal exercises will help that.
I absolutely do NOT know what I'm talking about, but the reading I've done has indicated that traditional abdominal exercises will not help if what you have is diastasis- meaning, the two halves of the external abdominal wall are actually separated. IF that is the case for you, be careful, because a lot of Pilates mat work (which you mentioned from PT) can make the abdominal separation worse.

Just wanted to throw in a word of caution since I, queen of ab work, did my Pilates faithfully for several months before I researched and learned that I was not helping myself at all...: not to mention the pressure it can put on the pelvic floor, therefore making the prolapse worse, too.
post #78 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by debsdancer View Post
I absolutely do NOT know what I'm talking about, but the reading I've done has indicated that traditional abdominal exercises will not help if what you have is diastasis- meaning, the two halves of the external abdominal wall are actually separated. IF that is the case for you, be careful, because a lot of Pilates mat work (which you mentioned from PT) can make the abdominal separation worse.

Just wanted to throw in a word of caution since I, queen of ab work, did my Pilates faithfully for several months before I researched and learned that I was not helping myself at all...: not to mention the pressure it can put on the pelvic floor, therefore making the prolapse worse, too.
Thanks for the post! When I met with my PT to work on my prolapse, she checked my abdomen and said everything felt fine and we actually did some ab work. But, even so, we were careful to do things other than crunches and to position me in a way that didn't do damage to my pelvic floor. I too did a ton of ab work about a month after DS was born and go figure, that's when I started feeling my prolapse more. I wish I had known then too that it would make things worse. Thanks for looking out for me though!
post #79 of 1498
Quote:
Originally Posted by debsdancer View Post
I absolutely do NOT know what I'm talking about, but the reading I've done has indicated that traditional abdominal exercises will not help if what you have is diastasis- meaning, the two halves of the external abdominal wall are actually separated. IF that is the case for you, be careful, because a lot of Pilates mat work (which you mentioned from PT) can make the abdominal separation worse.

Just wanted to throw in a word of caution since I, queen of ab work, did my Pilates faithfully for several months before I researched and learned that I was not helping myself at all...: not to mention the pressure it can put on the pelvic floor, therefore making the prolapse worse, too.
as a PT (and a woman with a cystocele), i can say that you are totally correct. pilates work on the apparati, including the reformer and magic chair, can do absolute wonders for prolapse. pilates mat work, however, is really contraindicated because it places our bodies in a vulnerable alignment. it's a bummer because most gyms offer pilates mat programs as part of their group exercise schedules, but to do reformer work you basically need to take private sessions or work with a therapist one on one, which can end up to be pretty pricey. i feel SO fortunate that my gym offers a pilates 'allegro' class, which is a group reformer class done on portable reformers. it still costs extra (whereas the mat classes are part of membership), but the $15 per session is totally worth it to keep up a safe and effective rehab program for abdominals and pelvic floor.

[quote=querico;8841507]"
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoo Loo Naturals View Post
Someting I have been thinking about is the babymoon. The actual rest period, lying-in with baby for a full 6 weeks. I know how hard that is with our modern society, distant relatives (both physically and emotionally), multiple children, moms back to work soon PP...the list goes on. BUT this is fundamental to propper physical healing. And I can't help but draw a correlation between our lack of propper after-care (in some Euro countries the mom has massages at her home, nursing/baby help, house help standard, covered by the health care system-they really value families!) and pelvic organ prolapse, postpartum depression and low breastfeeding rates."

I so wish I had a serious rest period.
I thought i was superwoman after achieving my much desired VBAC. I felt like after having birthed my babe after a 26 hour labor I could do anything, so I got out there at the end of the first week and was walking to central park, meeting people joyfully, but forgot to let myself rest. At the 3 wk point my adrenaline and my body crashed, and I realized something wasn't right. That is when I discovered my cystocele,(grade 3) and my image of my powerful self was squashed.

There is no telling if I made it worse by not resting, but I don't think it helped. I'm really trying to listen to my body now and be patient and ask for help when I need it. I struggle with discomfort every day. Afternoons into evenings are when it falls lower and my symptoms are worse. I had some improvement, and now seem to have taken a step backwards. But it seems that this is nature of what we are dealing with.

Welcome to all of the new women who have signed on here.:
i absolutely believe that the superwoman birth culture here in the US is very detrimental to women's health. women brag about being out and about and active a day or two after birth, and although i'm glad that some women feel so great after birth, it is one of the WORST things you can do to yourself. in the ayurvedic system of medicine, they have a concept of "40 days for 40 years", which is that the first 40 days after giving birth are an investment towards the next 40 years of a woman's life. makes total sense, and it would be interesting to see the numbers of POP in countries/cultures that honor the postpartum period as a time when women need to rest and recuperate vs. those parts of the world where being a "superwoman" as you describe it is seen as a sign of strength.

i pushed for 5 hours, half the time on my back :, and i basically blew out my entire pelvic floor. i was in so much pain after giving birth to dd, but the day after we got home, i insisted on taking a walk. i probably walked 200 yards or so and it totally wiped me out, and when my midwife checked in with me later that day, she told me that i needed to be very careful and to stay 'down' for a while longer, which was really hard for me to hear and do. in retrospect, i was insanely stupid for being as active as i was (and it wasn't much, but was certainly enough to make my bladder fall out of my body), and i try to spread the word as much as possible for women to get help around the house and take it easy after birth. people just don't talk about POP and most of the time when i've mentioned it to pregnant women, they've never even heard of it before.

that's got to change.
post #80 of 1498
I have a doctor's appointment Friday for a diagnosis, this thread is giving me hope.
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