​Pelvic Organ Prolapse

Pelvic organs are supported in t​he body by a network of muscles, ligaments and skin in the pelvic region. Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when these organs, including the uterus, bladder, vagina, small bowel, urethra or rectum, drop from their normal position, due to the weakening of the pelvic floor muscles and ligaments. 

Most prevalent in women, pelvic organ prolapse can be caused by childbirth or surgery. Other risk factors include smoking, old age, obesity, genetic disposition and some neurological or tissue disorders. Pelvic organ prolapse is quite common; most women will experience it at some point in their lives.

Many women with pelvic organ prolapse do not show any symptoms. In cases where symptoms are seen, they will include:

  • A feeling of pelvic pressure

  • Lower backache

  • Painful intercourse

  • Lump or bulge in the vagina

  • Enlarged or gaping vaginal opening

  • Difficulty in emptying bowels

  • Difficulty in emptying bladder

  • Constipation

  • Urinary incontinence or frequent urge to urinate

  • Recurrent urinary tract infections

  • Spotting or bleeding from vagina

Pelvic organ prolapse symptoms may worsen when standing up, moving around or jumping, and ease up when lying down. ​

Pelvic organ prolapse is rarely life-threatening, but it may worsen with time and cause pain and discomfort, or lead to other issues such as incontinence. Therefore, if you experience any of the above listed symptoms it is advised that you reach out to a physician working with the Women’s Health Care Service Line​ at The Aga Khan University Hospital.

Your time with your doctor may be limited, so make sure to prepare for your visit beforehand. H​ere​ are some tips to help get you started.

Initially, your doctor will take your medical history, including your symptoms and pregnancy history and conduct a physical, which may include a pelvic exam. For further diagnosis, you may be asked to undergo a series of tests.

If your symptoms are not causing hindrance in your everyday routine, you may be advised to wait and monitor the prolapse, and only seek medical intervention if the prolapse starts interfering with your daily life.

Where needed, treatment depends on the organ that is prolapsed, the severity of symptoms, existing medical conditions, and age and lifestyle preferences. Treatment for pelvic organ prolapse includes exercise, lifestyle adjustments, and surgery to correct or provide support for the prolapsed organ or vagina tissue.

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers various support services to help with managing or recovering from the disease or condition. These include but are not limited to nutrition, physiotherapy, rehabilitation, specialized clinics and some patient support groups. Your doctor or nurse will advise you accordingly.

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers financial assistance to those who are in need and fulfil the eligibility criteria. For further information, you can contact the Patient Welfare Department. You can find the contact number of the Patient Welfare Department in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage.

The financial counselling staff is available during office hours, at the main PBSD (Patient Business Services Department), to answer your financial queries on treatments’ costs and authorize admissions on partial deposit as per hospital policies allow. The financial counsellor in the emergency room is open 24/7. You can find the contact number of the Patient Business Services in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage. ​

Your doctor and or nurse will give you specific instructions about the prescribed medication. Please ensure that you take or use the prescribed medicine as advised. It can be dangerous to your health if you self-prescribe. Please inform the doctor or nurse beforehand if you have experienced any adverse reactions to any medications in the past. If you experience any symptoms of drug poisoning, overdose or severe reaction please contact the Pharmacy Service at The Aga Khan University Hospital immediately. You can find the contact number of the Pharmacy Services in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage


​​The information provided on our website is for educational purposes and not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. You should always seek the advice of your doctor or other healthcare professional provider.