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Neurourol Urodyn. 2015 Apr;34(4):316-21. doi: 10.1002/nau.22569. Epub 2014 Feb 5.

The effect of vaginal pelvic organ prolapse surgery on sexual function.

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Monash Medical Centre, Monash Health, Melbourne, VIC, Australia; Monash Institute of Medical Research, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia; Medical University Graz, Graz, Austria.



Data on female sexual function after prolapse surgery are conflicting. The aim of the study was to evaluate the change in sexual function and vaginal symptoms using patient reported outcomes following prolapse surgery in addition to the anatomical stage.


Prospective observational study of women undergoing pelvic organ prolapse (POP) surgery. The validated International Consultation on Incontinence modular Questionnaire-Vaginal Symptoms (ICIQ-VS) questionnaire was completed preoperatively, 6 and 12 months postoperatively.


Ninety-three women participated in the study with 83 (89%) returning the 6 months questionnaire and 80 (86%) the 12 months questionnaire. Twenty-four healthy women without prolapse were included as a control group. The mean vaginal- and sexual-symptom score both improved with a significant decrease at 6 months and 12 months after surgery (P < 0.001, P < 0.05, respectively). The POP-Q scores of each compartment also improved significantly after 6 and 12 months (P < 0.001) with 75% reaching anatomical success. There was no correlation between anatomical success and subjective ICIQ-VS outcomes. The vaginal and sexual matters score had a lesser reduction in women who had additional levator plication sutures during posterior vaginal repair compared to those without. Women with levator plication also showed a significant increase in postoperative dyspareunia.


Surgical intervention for POP improved the vaginal and sexual matters scores at 6 and 12 months postoperatively. Levator plication additionally to posterior vaginal repair is associated with an increase in postoperative dyspareunia rates and with decreased sexual function.


ICIQ-VS; PGII; patient reported outcome; pelvic organ prolapse; quality of life; sexual dysfunction

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