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Rectocele/Bladder Suspension Surgery Help
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WELCOME TO THE UROGYNECOLOGY COMMUNITY for WOMEN: This Patient-To-Patient Community is for discussions relating to Female Incontinence and Pelvic Floor disorders such as, Cystocele, Drooping Bladder, Intercourse Pain, Pelvic Organ Prolapse, Vaginal Relaxation and Vulvodynia.

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Rectocele/Bladder Suspension Surgery Help

I'm 44 and in pretty good health other than being over weight. In July, I had a total hysterectomy which took twice as long (2 hours verus 1 hour) due to weakened vaginal walls.  My doctor was to suspend my bladder as well but due to the weakened vaginal walls, he didn't.  I recovered from the hysterectomy with no problems and was back at work within 4 weeks.  He sent me to a urogynecologist for the bladder suspension and the weakened vaginal walls.  The urogynecologist determined I needed a rectocele along with the bladder suspension.  He is repairing the rectocele with mesh.  I've been reading comments/concerns when it comes to these surgeries and a lot have not been good.  I'm terrified of the recovery time and the pain associated with it.  Is there anyone out there that has had good experiences with a bladder suspension and a rectocele?  Thanks  
Tags: rectocele
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1128665_tn?1269277071
Yes, in my mid 50s I had rectocele, cystocele, and enterocele repair. (Had a hysterectomy at 40.) My urogynecologist spent quite a bit of time answering my questions prior to surgery. She assessed my needs and lifestyle, since I am extremely active and exercise aggressively, we discussed use of mesh, pros and cons, and I do have quite a bit of mesh in me. My urogyn used an older "tried and true" mesh instead of one of the new types; I've had no problems. Yes the heal curve is lengthy, it was a 12 week heal curve for me (grade 3, all 3 types of POP repaired), first week is the roughest and you can figure on being pretty non-functional 2nd week as well. But I have not regretted the procedure for one minute and am very happy with the results. It did take a bit of time to regain sensation in the area.


I feel the most important thing to keep in mind is by starting out with a urogynecologist, you are way ahead of the curve. Many other physicians perform POP procedures, but since the structural tissues are so intricate in the pelvic cavity, it truly takes a specialist to increase the odds of things going smoothly. Many bad procedures are the result of physicians who are good physicians not well versed or experienced in POP procedure doing repair. Also issues with women not listening to their drs orders post surgery-when you are told stay on the couch the first week, stay on the couch. Same goes for no lifting. This can be an extremely intricate surgery.

Post surgery, if you follow drs orders things should go well. Know that the region will not feel normal for a while and test the water slowly. Listen to your body. NO LIFTING is vital!!!

Good luck, if you have more questions send them in, any more insights I can provide that will ease your mind I'd be glad to share!

Sher
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you for answering my question.  I pretty much knew what to expect with my hysterectomy as I have friends that have undergone them.  However, no one has experienced my issues.  I was a good girl...laid on the couch..no lifting, etc with my hysterectomy and therefore he released me to go to work after 4 weeks.  I teach high  school computers and have the option of either standing or sitting. Both my doctors (my gynecologist is assisting with the urogynecologist) seem to think I should be back on my feet after 2 to 3 weeks.  I don't know if that is doable according to some of the posts I've seen.  However, I know each of our surgeries is different and each of us heal differently too.  My surgery is next month so I can get an extra week for free with our Thanksgiving holiday.  I've had it set up since the first part of September and I have been terrified ever since.  You have no idea how much my fears have been relieved (yes, I've been praying too) knowing other women out there have had good experiences and would do it again as well.  Thank you so much.  Once I go through my surgery and recovery, hopefully I can help someone in my shoes.  THANKS!!!
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You bet!

If you have any other questions as the date approaches or for that matter questions about "what is normal" after surgery, do not hesitate to give me a shout!

Sher
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Avatar_f_tn
How has it been post surgery as far as active lifestyle goes? I like to go backpacking and rock climbing. I am worried that this will be limited because of surgery.
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Avatar_f_tn
Sherrie no longer works on this forum just to let you know.
Contraindicated activities are weight baring, running, stomach crunches and planking etc.  Anything that increases inter abdominal pressure.  Any added pressure will put pressure on you Prolapses whether before of after surgery.  Walking is fine though.  Backpacking with any significant weight is not good but could you get someone else to carry the weight as walking is fine.  Rock climbing doesnt sound like a good idea to me but I am not a womens PT.  
Remember to think about the abdominal pressure with any activity and avoid lifting weight.  
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10225605_tn?1408638630
I am 2 years out from abdominal mesh repairs for
rectocele,cystocele,entrocele, vaginal vault prolapse, rectal intussusception...I did develop a new rectocele right where the mesh stopped because of my pelvic floor dysfunction which was surgically corrected 6 months ago vaginally with sutures only and I am able to do what ever feels ok in my body...I think the key is to REALLY LISTEN and if your body says no...that means no...unfortunately some things will put more abdominal pressure then others...the key is to make sure whatever you are doing you are breathing fully as holding your breath while doing something strenous in my opinion is putting more abdominal pressure then anything...we do things like cough, sneeze, blow our nose, have a bowel movement which ALL put abdominal pressure on the pf. but we don't have a choice so this says our body has to be able to tolerate/handle some downward pressure...the key in how I go in my body is to tune into what my body says is too much, making sure I am breathing, keeping good body mechanics when lifting something heavy...and so on...next thing I do is decide if it is worth the risk for the pay off it gives me...for example...running is not worth the risk to me (although to some gals it is) so I don't run..but I do lift up to 50 pounds, do heavy yard work, leg lifts, plank and full leg lifts...because to me the pay off of keeping my body strong is worth the risk...if we gain weight that too puts extra abdominal pressure on our pf...so it's a balance and only we can decide what risks we are willing to take in regards to our health and ending up needing future surgery...So REALLY tune into your body...as my dr. told me..."use common sense" I do...that really doesn't give me any can'ts or cans for that matter...just be smart and if it feels like to much...then it most likely is...but the catch is if don't exercise and allow our body to weaken this is not good either...so if it were me and I hiked with a back pack I would pack only what I REALLY needed and make sure it felt very balanced on my back and if I got tired wile out hiking take a break or stop...your body will tell you so when it gives you the first indication it's time to stop...stop or stop asap...and don't push through to finish whatever it is that is questionable as I think we pop gals do all too often!;)
I stay fit mostly with yoga and walking...I love hiking as well...So I use common sense and listen to my body, but both my surgeons told me I could lift up to 40 pounds, 50 pounds on occasion...but repetitive lifting that much (like for a job) is not ok...so far...so good! :) It's so individual because it depends on how fit we are to begin with on what we can do...I am fit and active...do not ever plan to stop that! But that is just me as I am not a dr. or pt...just someone who has actually lived with pop ~ pre-op and post op...;)
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Avatar_f_tn
We are all different and a suture only op or porcine op would not be as strong as a mesh op in terms of material.  I personally would not lift 50lbs whether I had an op or not,  Some ladies are told to lift no more than 10lbs after their ops.  It is up to you as to how you want your healing to work out and your repairs to hold up.  Good luck with your op
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Each woman is different definitely and heavy lifting should not even be considered until 9 months to a year out...but being a woman who has had surgery and has been ok'd to lift 50#'s on occasion (by 2 pop specialists)...I feel women should know this...I am 2 years out from mesh repairs, 6 months out from vaginal suture repairs (new rectocele caused by pfd not lifting) and my repairs are holding strong...I don't lift that much weight regularly which the surgeon's made clear if it was repetitive then no, but in the realm of gardening, lifting bags of  litter and such it was fine, so I feel that would most likely apply to hiking and carrying a back pack keeping things as light as possible of course but to never be able to lift more then 10 pounds is VERY unrealistic... so according to my uro/gyns  occasional heavy lifting using proper body alignment should not cause an issue ~ I do this a couple  times a month and after I have  a day of heavy work/lifting I take the next day to completely rest giving my pelvic floor muscles a chance to recovery as we would any other part of our body...am I saying this mean every woman should do that...not necessarily...but I feel VERY confident that both my Urogynecologist are very knowledgeable, do excellent work and both have said the same thing to me...use common sense (which is why I rest after heavy work) and up to 50 pounds on occasion, not as a repetitive job...it is not realistic for a woman to never lift over 10 pounds for the rest of her life...I can't imagine any woman in their 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and even 60's to never lift over 10 pounds...I feel plan gravity will eventually cause the repairs to shift downward as gravity pulls skin down it will also include fascia which is what all our repairs are sewn into...so even if you never lift over 10 pounds ~ gravity, sneezing, coughing, blowing your nose...living life will change the pelvic floor...obviously...we all have to make our best life decisions...but I feel I am proof at 2 years out...if you are keeping your pelvic floor strong and  healthy and have had a good surgeon do excellent repairs you can actually have your life back and live fully...I am in no way saying everyone should lift that much...just saying I do and my repairs are still holding strong at 2 years...;) We all have to make a decision, but I just think it's important to share that the most important time to not lift over 10 lbs is when you are in the healing phase of the post op...but ALWAYS talk to your Dr. as they know your health status better then anyone on an online forum...I am not a doctor...just sharing my own journey...;)
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Avatar_f_tn
It looks like ipurr2 and myself will have to differ in our opinions as to how much you can lift.  I stick with a much lower amount of 10 lbs and also understand that sometimes we are in situations that are compromising regarding weight lifting.
Look after yourself and you healing JEMLS and good luck x
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yes, I suppose we will have differing opinions on this...but keep in mind...I am not saying it is right for every women...I am saying my uro/gyns have ok'd this for me and the fact of the matter being is I have had the surgery and have felt how it feels in my body...not just what I am reading...so I am just sharing my personal experience as a woman who has had the surgery and have felt it in my body...unfortunately at this point there are no studies to say what is acceptable and most likely never will be because the common ground we have is pelvic organ prolapse which is what we have in common, but the reasons we have prolapse can't be exactly figured out any more then what each woman can and can't do after surgery, being that all of us came to this place of pop differently as well as where we are in our fitness and activity level...we also have different repairs which would come into play on the strength of the repair (mesh, suture, animal tissue, our own fascia).  Plus, we can't have surgery and do things one way and then have the same surgery and do it the other way...so we can't say ever with 100% certainty what anyone can and cannot do safely...it is all about deciding and tuning into our own body...having had surgery for both endometriosis as well as pop...and living with pelvic issues for over 1/2 my life...I do have a lot of experience in how things feel in MY body as well as the ability to share with women what it is like "after the surgery"...and I am not telling anyone what they should or should not do...just sharing my story to give hope that you can in fact live your life lifting more then 10 lbs...at 2 years post mesh op  my repairs are holding strong with my lifting 40 lbs I feel pretty confident in sharing my story of hope women can have life after pop and live fully. I may one day be singing a different tune...but at 2 years out...I am confident in what I personally can lift safely...so yes, we will have to differ in our opinions...the huge difference is I am post op and you are pre-op...we are in completely different places on what we have felt in our body but I have continued to lift through out the whole ordeal but I make sure I lift properly, carefully and if my pelvic floor is tired I do not lift that day but wait until I am having a day when my pelvis feels good then after a busy day filled with lifting I rest the next day...two days if my body asks for it. Each woman will have to decide for herself dependent on where she is in her journey, the type of repairs she has, what her fitness level was prior to surgery and so on... just as each women decides to have surgery or not...all we really have to go on are the stories of women who have gone through it..I have and I am just sharing hope as a women on the after surgery side of this pop journey...;)
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Avatar_f_tn
I understand you are simply speaking from your own perspective and experience.  However, lifting weight pre and post POP op is generally discouraged and seen to be contraindicated.  Not all women will be as in tune with their bodies as you feel you are and good luck to you.  I still feel it is important to be cautious about weight lifting just the same as with other contraindicated activities for ladies whether they have by pre or post POP op.  
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which is why I say "this is what I have been ok'd to do and it is not necessarily ok for every woman! I have yet to see any actual studies saying with 100% certainty what we can/can't do...ask 20 different specialists and they will not agree either...too many variables which is why each woman has to tune into HER body and feel it...if it doesn't feel right then it isn't...This is NOT just my perspective but also guidance of 2 brilliant uro/gyns who do 100's of these surgeries yearly...so each woman has to figure out what is right for her with the help of her surgeon because it will also depend on the type repairs, extent of damage, fitness of the woman...excessive weight is also said to cause excessive pressure so we sometimes have to make our own best informed choices and I am just sharing my story...not saying what another woman should or should not do...just what I have been told I could do, am doing at 2 years out from extensive mesh repairs...in hopes of showing women they can have their life back..they need to ask the hard questions of their surgeons on what is best for them and then move forward...as I have done...it is when the scar tissue is setting that is most critical in regards to what we do...a good 3-6 month healing curve...but then each woman has to decide as you can find many different perspectives in regards to what is ok and not ok in the journey of pop...but no definitive studies as of yet...I am 2 years into my own study in my body...so far so good...for me..as I can only speak of what is happening in my pop journey!
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I will not be commenting again...but felt this needed to be cleared up...as I have never said all women should lift what I lift...all I have said is that I am doing it with my surgeons approval and so far...I am fine at 2 years out extensive mesh repairs!
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