Freaking Out...Prolapsed Uterus? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 05:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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On Thursday it will be 4 weeks since the birth of my son...I took a peek w/a mirror of vagina today and I can't see the opening...there is this bulge of skin there? What is it...do I have a prolapsed uterus? I'm freaking out...what happens if I do have a prolapsed uterus? It is not hemirhoida b/c it is covering my vaginal opening not my butt...help!

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#2 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 06:03 PM
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ok, first, i have no idea what it is.

but second, if it is prolapsed or misaligned uterus stuff, i recommend mayan abdominal massage. it works wonderfully.
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#3 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 06:08 PM
 
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oh, mama...i know that feeling you're having.

first of all, please calm down.

you just gave birth, and it is possible that you have a postpartum prolapse. it could be the uterus, or it could be your bladder. definitely bring it up at your next postpartum visit, they can take a look and tell you.

i have a postpartum cystocele (bladder prolapse) and at about 4w pp i discovered it while taking a shower, i was shocked and devastated.

i went to a physical therapist who specializes in women's health and she assessed it and we started doing some exercises (pilates, kegels with her feeling inside to check the quality and strength of the contraction) and it has helped tremendously. now at 14 months pp, i don't even think much about it, although when i get really tired or have been up on my feet and walking all day i feel a bit 'draggy' in my pelvic floor. i expect that to resolve as i continue to get stronger.

i highly recommend seeing a physical therapist that specializes in women's health. i am a PT myself, so if you are having difficulty finding someone in your area with this specialty, please pm me and i will try to help you.

according to my pt and also the research that i've done, this is very very very common, it's just that no-one really talks about it. and the good news is that you can do something about it.

the other thing that i can tell you is that please be easy on yourself right now, try to get as much rest as you can and give yourself some time each day to lie down and relax. also, if you want to look at more information from other women who have experienced this, i highly recommend the whole woman website. there are a lot of young, healthy, fit moms on there who are dealing with postpartum pelvic organ prolapse. the common denominators seem to be: longer than average pushing phase, forced/purple pushing, pushing in the lithotomy position, epidurals, relatively large babies, episiotomy, use of vacuum/forceps, although there are some women on there who have had this happen after gentle homebirths, too.

also please feel free to pm me if you just want to talk, i remember feeling really alone and isolated about this until i started to reach out. then in being open about it, i found out that i have 3 neighbors within a stone's throw that all have dealt with this issue in some way shape or form. it is much more common than we know and has yet to reach the collective consciousness of most women.

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#4 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 06:10 PM
 
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oh, yes, i also second the mayan abdominal massage that zoebird mentioned.

it is absolutely a wonderful healing modality for ANY postpartum woman. i had it done and it was so helpful.

they usually recommend having it done at around 3 months pp. the therapist will teach you a simple, quick self care routine that you can do every day to help your body heal from the effects of pregnancy and childbirth.

again!
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#5 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 07:11 PM
 
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:

Also, right now you are in the middle of the postpartum period.

You must RELAX as much as POSSIBLE!!

Right now, the ligaments that suspend your uterus are still stretched out from pregnancy. And all the ligaments and tendon-y bits and muscle connections are also stretched out, and therefore weak. Kegels cannot fix this type of wear-n-tear; they can stregnthen muscle, but not undo some of this type of damage.

Putting pressure and weight on these body parts now is like walking for miles on a sprained ankle--don't do it! let it heal FIRST.

Skip vacuuming, limit stairs--those things raise your intra-abdominal pressure and exhert force downwards (right onto your uterus and bladder!) A quality PT will tell you that, though, and give you lifestyle techniques and help you heal.

This is why so many OTHER CULTURES have their new mamas sit DOWN and observe a few weeks of peace and quiet....because the body deserves a chance to heal. Football players get put on disabliity and are allowed to recover--so should new mamas. No laundry duty for you!
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#6 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 07:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am feeling so upset and overwhelmed right now...I'm crying as I type...I feel like I can't catch a break here and I'm scared and unsure of everything I do. We've had thrush basically since he was born and BFhas been so hard. It is so frustrating b/c he has a great latch and a big appetite and I have a great supply (or at least I did last Sat wneh I met with my LC)...now I'm constantly scared that I'm messing up my supply or that he isn't eating enough b/c he gets fussy when nursing...I'm trying to hold on to the idea that it is the thrush that is causing the fussiness but I keep thinking I screwed things up...I hate that I can't tell how much milk he is getting. He sleeps for long periods of time (4+ hours) and I fear that is too long for a newborn and what that is doing to my milk supply...not to mention the pain...sometimes I just dread nursing b/c I want some relief from the constant nursing or pumping and from the pain.

Now to see this huge grape size bulge of skin down below where it doesn't belong...I'm totally freaked out...I'm so overwhelmed with the constant nipple care and laundry care to rid us of the thrush...where the he!! am I going to find time to take on some new regiment to fix my insides that are falling out of me...not to mention what this means about my fertilty. It was an overwhelming battle to get PG with my son and we needed to take the most extreme measures...I'm so scared that this will keep me from getting PG again. We have a small window of opportunity to do IVF again before the end of 2007 and I'm freaked out right now. I can deal with my tubes not working b/c you can work around that and still get PG...but I need my uterus inside me to carry another child.

I just want to enjoy my baby and I'm so distracted and overwhelmed by helath problems...I'm falling into a depression I think as much as I keep trying to fight it...I just need a break!

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#7 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 07:44 PM
 
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It's probably a cystocele (prolapsed bladder) rather than a uterine prolapse. I think cystoceles are more common. I have one. I was freaked out at first too, because I thought it was a uterine prolapse. My midwife told me it was. So then I went to an OBGYN for a second opionion, and all she said was, "Nope, there's no uterine prolapse." But she didn't say that it was anything else, which left me feeling very confused. : So then I went to a second OBGYN, who correctly diagnosed cystocele. Then I went to a third OBGYN for the tiebreaker, who also said it was a cystocele. My physical therapist and current OBGYN both have told me that they are extremely common. It's important to do kegals for the rest of your life to help prevent urinary incontinence. I have a little trouble not experiencing small leaks when I jump. When I sneeze I have to cross my legs.
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#8 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 08:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I find it hard to believe it is my bladder...I've had bladder problems for years...constant urgency...my bladder was on mild anti-depressants prior to me trying to concieve...my urologist said I had weak pelvic floor muscles and not cystitis or UTIs which was causing my pain and constant urgency...I feared my whole PG how bad things would be w/my bladder are birth but actually this is the best my bladder has ever felt...no urgency...it fills up and I have ease with getting it out...

Maybe you are right...my OB will see me on Friday...I hate that I have to wait...is this not considered an emergency where they would want to see me sooner? Some of what I've read about treatment for uterine prolapse says hysterectomy...I'm scared...please tell me that is only for post-menapausal women...

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#9 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 08:28 PM
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sounds like you're going through so much mama!

see if you can get someone in your community to come and help out with laundry and cleanliness and help you rest, ok? might be there's a solution right next door.
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#10 of 23 Old 01-02-2007, 09:00 PM
 
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everything will be

OK




FOR real.

This is your post-partum time.

It is tumultuous, it is emotional, it is crazy, you are tired, you are navigating your new life as a mother.

Breastfeeding is not 100% e-z right now. That is challenging. If you're up to it, seek out a La Leche League group in your area.....that's what they're there for, new mama support.

http://www.lalecheleague.org/WebUS.html

Your baby can sleep for 4 hours. He's 4 weeks old--not 2 days, it's ok. Breastfeed him on-demand--you just drink water, eat food, rest when you can. That's all you have to do.

If your bulge is in the front, it's probalby a cycstocele, or prolapsy bladder.

This idea that a woman's uterus needs to be removed is so repulsive to me.....the outrageous numbers of wombs surgically removed each year is the only thing worse than the 30% c-section rate we're all living with in the USA here. God/Nature/the Universe/Natural selection did NOT make women's bodies frail, or to fail.

YOU JUST GREW A HUMAN.

YOU ARE STILL FEEDING THAT HUMAN with your breastmilk.

THEREFORE: I think a prolaspsy condition can be mitigated, without surgery.

Urologists, OB/GYNs, they are all about surgery. Please keep this in mind as you listen to their advice. Also, note how some of the information on the Internet concludes that even after hysterectormy, prolapse of the vaginal vault (that's all that's left) occurs. Surgery won't correct the "problem".

I am the daughter of a woman who was convinced she needed to have a hysterectormy to take care of her serious prolapse issues (both bladder and rectal prolapse.) I take your post very seriously. I cried when my insides were saggy day after day after my second child was born.

I thought I too would be doomed to a hysterectomy.

And as the weeks passed, and I avoided all stairs, vacuuming, lifting (things like laundry--and yes I know these chores must be done) I noticed my body had time to heal, and the oppertunity to heal.

And when I met with my physical therapist (after 4 months) I learned a lot about whole body muscles and dynamics and all sorts about pelvic floor muscles and abs and back muscles and glutes and hamstrings, and how.....

they all work together

to keep your prolapsing self in a non-prolapsing way. It's more complex than, "oh jee, yank out that pesky womb." (What if that's the attitude bridge builders took with bridges? just remove it? : Buttress and support it--give a woman help to recruit some other core muscles to work with.)

(And maybe this applies or not, but sometimes, with a cystocele, the buldge of the bladder into the vagina can eliminate incontonence because the buldge is over the bladder-end of the urethra, if that makes any sense, or if that helps you identify your current situation.)

Hang in there--try not to do too much around the house. Things will seem brighter soon--just hang in there......we're here for you (& I'm sure also in the breastfeeding forum, too, if you don't go to LLL.)
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#11 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 12:23 PM
 
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ACUPUNCTURE ACUPUNCTURE ACUPUNCTURE

I have a severe prolapse and it fixed it quickly. ALong with lots of kegels to keep it in place.

My prolapse fell again when I got pregnant....as few treatments and everything was back in the right place!!

I can NOT recommend it enough!!!
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#12 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 12:28 PM
 
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I also appriciate this calm, whole-body stance:

http://www.wholewoman.com/index.php
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#13 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 01:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the help. I looked at the 2 websites for prolapse...not sure what to do with the one in NM b/c I can't afford to fly there to be treated...but once I get my official Dx on Friday from my OB, I will look into the mayan massage...there are some places here in NY that do them...

How long does a prolapse take to heal...am I in for alot of pain ahead?

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#14 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 01:08 PM
 
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In order to answer how long it'll take to heal, I'd like to know the answer to this:

How long does it take for a prolapse to happen?

Probably, it's a combination of overall pre-pregnancy muscle tone, combined with the stress of carrying 30+ extra lbs during the pregnancy, hormones that relax the uterine ligaments and therefore allow prolapse to happen.

So probably, it'll take a few more weeks for things to re-tighten again.

As for pain? If you are experiencing pain now, that's sad. but I don't think that the course to healing would involve any pain, really.

I am sure your OB can give you a referreal to a physical therapist who specializes in women's health, and hopefully that would be covered by insurance.
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#15 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 01:43 PM
 
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I had a prolapse after this last birth. It really creeped me out that my cervix was almost hanging out of my vagina (it was just barely inside, not even a fingertip inside). I was pushing things though, lifting my 2 year old for diaper changes, taking all 3 kids on walks, on my feet to cook and clean, etc. It was really hard for me to realize that I couldn't do those things. Instead I had my 2 year old climb onto the couch for diaper changes, had him climb himself in and out of bed for naps, and if he wanted to be held he had to climb into my lap rather than me pick him up into my lap. I gave up walks, gave up cooking, didn't lift anything heavier than my baby, and spent much more time just hanging out. It resolved a great deal on its own by now, which is 6 months pp. It really hasnt caused me anypain now. It hurt when I was newly pp because when I walked, it felt like my uterus was going to fall out of my body. So, with some time things may bounce back some on their own. You are pretty freshly pp. Take it easy though! You could really do more damage if you aren't taking it easy!

Erika, mama to three beautiful kids (plus one gestating), and wife to one fantastic man.

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#16 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 01:47 PM
 
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This may be way TMI, but I haven't seen it suggested thus far, and it was my experience after carrying my twins.

Anyhow, the first time we had intercourse after they were born (c-section with no labor, no dilation) was 12 days post-op. It felt like there wasn't enough room length wise inside my vagina. I was perplexed enough to investigate matters myself.

My cervix was WAY low in my vagina, like half way down. If it had been further, I could see how it would be possible to see it protruding through the vaginal opening as you are describing.

Either way, by my 4 week check up, it was exactly where it was supposed to be. I realize you are already at 4 weeks post partum, but mine wasn't as low as you describe, and I didn't deliver vaginally, so perhaps all you need is a bit more time for things to go back to normal.

Definitely seek professional guidance, if for no other reason that to ease your mind about what is happening with your body during recovery.

As for thrush, hang in there. I nursed three babies prior to my current 5 week old and never had any problems like thrush, mastitis, low supply, etc. And boy did I not fully appreciate how fortunate I was! We've I *think* successfully gotten rid of thrush that I discovered on DDs tongue at 18 days old.

I insisted on treating it VERY agressively in both baby AND myself, and I hear you about the laundry, sterilizing, etc. It's a huge pain, especially on very little sleep. Hopefully you'll have success getting rid of it very soon.
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#17 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 08:29 PM
 
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Quote:
everything will be
OK
FOR real.
This is your post-partum time.
It is tumultuous, it is emotional, it is crazy, you are tired, you are navigating your new life as a mother.

Your baby can sleep for 4 hours. He's 4 weeks old--not 2 days, it's ok. Breastfeed him on-demand--you just drink water, eat food, rest when you can. That's all you have to do.
hear, hear! hang in there, try not to panic.

Berkeley mom of 3 and President of Tender Cargo Baby Gear
and The Nurture Center Store and Resource Center 3399 Mt Diablo Bl Lafayette CA 888-998-BABY
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#18 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 10:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm terrified of my exam on Friday...I'm afraid he is going to poke atht eh bilge and try to shove it back in...I'm scared to death it will hurt...

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#19 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 10:58 PM
 
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Originally Posted by BlueIrises View Post
I'm terrified of my exam on Friday...I'm afraid he is going to poke atht eh bilge and try to shove it back in...I'm scared to death it will hurt...
Poke your bulge yourself, to see if it's tender.

If it is, you can tell him to back off from doing that at your appointment.

It is your vagina, after all. He's just the doc who you are paying....you are paying him for his opinion and expertise, to evaluate it (which is also your choice)--but you OWN it.
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#20 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 11:00 PM
 
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I had a rectocele after my first son( similar to what the others are talking about, but the back wall of the vagina prolapsing out). It was pretty bad and I felt pretty panicked about it. It resolved completely on its own with time. It didnt come back with the pregnancy or birth of my second. Four weeks postpartum is really really to early to know the outcome at all. Take it easy mama!

:
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#21 of 23 Old 01-03-2007, 11:38 PM
 
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I agree....poke around yourself. I did. I didn't have any pain. I couldn't really push mine up much, if at all. But it never hurt. Just felt like my vagina was full.

I personally wouldn't let them go pushing things around in there. But that is just me. I did acupuncture, lots of kegels and drank lots of red raspberry tea.
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#22 of 23 Old 01-06-2007, 12:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well I found out today that it is indeed a rectocele. I'm not freaked out anymore b/c I'm glad it isn't my uterus. I have to figure out how I'm going to help things along...

RRT is not an option...I tried to drink it while PG but not even liking the scent of tea...I couldn't bear the taste. I'm just not a tea drinker.

I need to force myself to do kegels...I just get so lazy with them...maybe if I was more on top of them during my PG I wouldn;t be in the situation now...

Acu is definitiely an option...I used it to help me get PG and I could def use 45 min of peace now that I have a baby!

Mama to Jack (12/7/06) & Liam (4/3/08) & Iris Hope (10/6/10)
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#23 of 23 Old 01-06-2007, 04:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by rstump View Post
I did acupuncture, lots of kegels and drank lots of red raspberry tea.
Do you recall the points used for your accupuncture therapy? I've had some pelvic floor issues and would be willing to try just about anything except surgery to remedy the issues.
Is this therapy something that most likely all accu. practitioners would be knowledgable about?
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