Home' Nova National : NOVA NATIONAL APRIL 12 Contents Prolapsed bladder is a
midlife condition for many
women, causing pain and
Lyn Craven explains its
cause, symptoms and some
Easing the Strain
A number of women experience
prolapse of the bladder, a
condition that can be due to
many reasons and be quite
embarrassing and painful in some cases.
It can, in fact, have an impact on their
social activities and personal life creating
stress and ultimately relationship problems,
particularly when it comes to intimacy.
The bladder is a hollow organ in the
pelvis that stores urine. When the bladder
fills, pressure creates the urge to urinate.
Urine travels from the bladder, leaving
the body via the urethra.
In women, the front wall of the vagina
supports the bladder and can weaken
or loosen with age. Physical stress, such
as childbirth, can damage this part of the
vaginal wall. If it deteriorates, it will no
longer give support so the bladder can
prolapse, descending into the vagina. This
may trigger urinary difficulties, discomfort,
pain during sex and stress incontinence
such as urine leakage.
Prolapsed bladders (known also as
cystoceles or fallen bladders) are graded
based on how far the bladder droops into
Grade 1 - mild: small portion of the bladd-
er droops into the vagina.
Grade 2 - moderate: bladder droops
enough to reach the opening of the
Grade 3 - severe: bladder protrudes from
the body through the vaginal opening.
Grade 4 - complete: entire bladder
protrudes completely outside the vagina;
often associated with other pelvic organ
prolapses (uterine, rectocele, enterocele).
Prolapsed bladders are commonly
associated with menopause. Prior to
menopause, women's bodies create the
hormone oestrogen, which helps keep
the muscles in and around the vagina
strong. The ovaries stop creating oestrogen
after menopause, and those muscles tend
to weaken as a result. However, oestrogen
production shifts from the ovaries to
the fat cells and estrone (E1), the chief
oestrogen, is converted from androgens
(androstenedione) and produced mainly
by the adrenal glands, but in lesser
Causes of bladder prolapse
Childbirth is the most common cause
of prolapsed bladder due to the delivery
process that is stressful on vaginal tissues
and muscles. Another significant cause
is menopause as described above. Other
common causes are fibroids poking into
the bladder and creating pressure, and
straining. Lifting heavy objects, straining
during bowel movements, having a long
term condition that involves coughing,
or long term constipation may weaken
muscles of the pelvic floor.
● The first symptom noticed is the
presence of tissue in the vagina often
described as feeling like a ball. Others are
● Discomfort or pain in the pelvis
● Tissue protruding from the vagina (may
be tender and may bleed.)
● Difficulty urinating
● Feeling that the bladder is not empty
immediately after urinating
● Stress incontinence (urine leakage
during sneezing, coughing, exertion)
● More frequent bladder infections
● Painful intercourse
● Low back pain
Medical diagnosis and treatment
Once the diagnosis ascertains the grade
of the prolapsed bladder, various medical
treatments are offered, such as surgery
for more severe cases, and instructions
on pelvic floor exercises.
Some women have had repeated
surgeries -- it really depends on the
individual and how they manage their
activities after surgery.
continued page 32
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A Master of Dragon Gate Chi Gong Daoyin
Therapy. For 14 generations, this therapy has
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only one person receiving the teaching in
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After Chi healing, Master Tao teaches Chi Gong
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teaching of Daoyin therapy with each session lasting about 45 minutes.
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