June is Prolapse Awareness Month

Jun 19, 2023

June is Prolapse Awareness Month! Many of you may be asking, what is a pelvic organ prolapse?

A pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is when one or more pelvic organs descend from their normal position. The organ(s) may remain inside the body or protrude externally through the vaginal opening or anus. Pelvic organs that can be impacted are the uterus, urethra, bladder, intestines and rectum. It can cause a variety of symptoms which may include urinary incontinence, difficulty with bowel movements, low back pain, and pelvic pressure.

 Hmmm, so why does it happen?

One of the main roles of our pelvic floor muscles is to provide a foundation for our internal organs. The muscles of the pelvic floor attach to the bottom of your pelvis in a hammock-like fashion to support your pelvic organs. If our pelvic floor muscles become too weak to reinforce the structure of our pelvic floor, then they inappropriately lengthen and allow our pelvic organs to descend from their optimal position. Due to a sensation of our pelvic organs falling or dropping, our bodies may respond by creating tension! 


"My doctor told me to just do Kegels." 

We hear this...a lot. 

Even if your doctor prescribed Kegel exercises and they are appropriate for you, chances are they did not teach you how to perform them properly or give you a specific protocol. Are you doing 10 kegels a day or 10,000 kegels a day? Also, a pelvic organ prolapse is complex.  There are multiple factors that need to be addressed - not only isolated pelvic floor contractions (aka the Kegel). Understanding proper body mechanics, breathing strategies, pressure management, and how to decrease impact of your pelvic floor is crucial to optimal symptom management. How you run, lift, pick up children, or sit at your desk, are just a few examples of daily tasks that can be placing stress on your pelvic floor and contributing to your prolapse.

 The other hot topic in our clinic: Should I have surgery?

While surgery is an option, pelvic floor physical therapy has been proven to be a safe and effective treatment for prolapse, and it comes without the risks of surgery.

In a systematic review from 2022, pelvic floor muscle training, which can be accomplished through the guidance of a pelvic floor physical therapist, was shown to be effective for improving symptoms and quality of life related to pelvic, urinary, and intestinal POP.1

Even if you have surgery, there is still a risk of your prolapse coming back. In a systematic review from 2018, 37.7% of vulva owners experience prolapse recurrence after surgery.2 


What about an ortho physical therapist or seeing a personal trainer?

Having a multidisciplinary health and wellness team is important. However, a pelvic floor physical therapist will be your secret ingredient in prolapse treatment. In a study published in 2023, to date, there is no evidence that other exercise programs are more effective than pelvic floor muscle training for POP.3


Okay, I have a prolapse. What's next?

If you have been diagnosed with or suspect a POP, give us a call today or text "prolapse" to (413) 203-9321. We use a 3-step method at our clinic: Restore, Rebuild, Renew. First, we will provide you with the education and treatment you need to alleviate your symptoms - starting now. Then, we will take a look into all the factors that could have caused your prolapse and give you the tools you need to prevent it from recurring in the future. 


- Your Team at Renew Health

At Renew Health, pelvic health is all we do. ♥


 1 Espiño-Albela A, Castaño-García C, Díaz-Mohedo E, Ibáñez-Vera AJ. Effects of Pelvic-Floor Muscle Training in Patients with Pelvic Organ Prolapse Approached with Surgery vs. Conservative Treatment: A Systematic Review. J Pers Med. 2022;12(5):806. Published 2022 May 17. doi:10.3390/jpm12050806

2 Friedman T, Eslick GD, Dietz HP. Risk factors for prolapse recurrence: systematic review and meta-analysis. Int Urogynecol J. 2018;29(1):13-21. doi:10.1007/s00192-017-3475-4 

3 Bø K, Anglès-Acedo S, Batra A, et al. Are hypopressive and other exercise programs effective for the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse?. Int Urogynecol J. 2023;34(1):43-52. doi:10.1007/s00192-022-05407-



Disclaimer: This blog is purely educational and is not intended to replace medical care or professional advice.


Renew Health is committed to changing the way that pelvic health is being viewed and delivered. Together, we can do better. 

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