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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1998 Dec;179(6 Pt 1):1446-9; discussion 1449-50.

Posterior vaginal prolapse and bowel function.

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  • 1Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics and the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study's objectives were to describe symptoms related to bowel dysfunction in women with uterovaginal prolapse and to compare these symptoms according to extent of posterior vaginal prolapse.

STUDY DESIGN:

One hundred forty-three women completed a questionnaire assessment of bowel function and underwent standardized physical examination according to the International Continence Society's system for grading uterovaginal prolapse.

RESULTS:

The mean age was 59.2 years (SD 11.8 years); 78% of the women were postmenopausal. According to the furthest extent of posterior vaginal prolapse at point Bp, 22 (15.5%) were in stage 0, 46 (32.4%) were in stage I, 50 (35.2%) were in stage II, 23 (16.2%) were in stage III, and 1 (0.7%) was in stage IV. Ninety-two percent of women reported having bowel movements at least every other day. When asked whether straining was required for them to have a bowel movement, 38 (26.6%) reported never or rarely, 71 (49.6%) reported sometimes, 20 (14.0%) reported usually, and 14 (9.8%) reported always. When asked whether they ever needed to help stool come out by pushing with a finger in the vagina or rectum, 98 (69.0%) reported never or rarely, 30 (21.1%) reported sometimes, 8 (5.6%) reported usually, and 6 (4.2%) reported always. Twenty-three women (16.1%) had fecal incontinence, with 11 having loss of control of stool less often than once a month and 12 having it more often than once a month. When asked whether to rate how much they were bothered by their bowel function on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being not at all and 10 being extremely, 51.7% of women chose 1 to 4, 20.3% chose 5 to 7, and 28% chose >/=8. There were no clinically significant associations between any of the questions related to bowel function and severity of posterior vaginal prolapse.

CONCLUSION:

Women with uterovaginal prolapse frequently have symptoms related to bowel dysfunction, but this is not associated with the severity of posterior vaginal prolapse.

PMID:
9855579
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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