Posterior Repair

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What is posterior repair?

A posterior repair is necessary when the vagina and the back passage - rectum are no longer held up properly. The rectum drops down onto the back of the vagina it makes a weakness or bulge. The bulge is called a prolapse. A prolapsed rectum is called a rectocele. The prolapsed rectum may not empty properly when you want. The prolapse makes you feel uncomfortable in the vagina. The prolapse happens if the supports to the vagina and rectum stretch during pregnancy, and do not get back to normal afterwards. This may not show up until after the menopause. Having a heavy job, having a chronic cough, or being overweight will all bring on a prolapse earlier. This procedure will tighten up the supports to the rectum, and take away the bulge in the vagina.

What are the risks associated with this procedure?

  • Damage to a vein or artery that could cause serious bleeding.
  • Making a hole in my bladder that could cause a tract (fistula) between my vagina and bladder.
  • Making a hole in my rectum that could cause a tract (fistula) between my vagina and rectum.
  • That any urine leakage that I have may not be improved.
  • That my bulging rectum (rectocele) may not improve or could return.
  • That I may have difficulty emptying my bladder.
  • Damage to my ureters, the tubes that carry urine from my kidneys to my bladder.
  • That I may develop bulging in my vagina (vaginal vault eversion).
  • That I may develop infection in my incisions or my bladder.

How do I prepare for a posterior repair?

Stop smoking and get your weight down if you are overweight. If you know that you have problems with your blood pressure, your heart, or your lungs, ask your family doctor to check that these are under control. If you are past menopause, your vagina may be short of female hormone (estrogen). You may heal better if you have some hormone replacement treatment (HRT). You may be started on this before your operation using tablets, patches, or a vaginal cream. This will be for a month or two to cover the operation only. You don’t need to decide at this stage about having long-term HRT. Check that you have a relative or friend who can come with you to the hospital, take you home, and look after you for the first week after the operation. Please tell the doctors and the nurses of any allergies to tablets, medicines or dressings. 

What happens after the procedure?

You are likely to feel tired and need rest two or three times a day for a for three to four weeks. You will gradually improve. You can drive as soon as you can make an emergency stop without discomfort, generally after three weeks. You can start sexual relations before you return for the six-week check, if you feel comfortable enough, and you have no blood loss. You should be able to return to work after about six weeks.

When should I call Greenville OB/GYN

Call our emergency number at any time if:

  • You have a fever over 100 F (37.8 C).

Call during regular office hours if:

  • You have questions about the procedure or its result.
  • You want to make another appointment.

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