Whenever you have surgery, you need to do some pre-operative tests done to confirm that your body is healthy enough for the surgery, and to determine the severity of the problem. When it comes to Cystocele (Fallen Bladder), surgery is the only treatment option available. If you are preparing for such a surgery, it is important that you know about fallen bladder and the tests done before surgery.
What Fallen Bladder Is
As the name suggests, fallen bladder occurs when the bladder falls. This occurs mostly in women. In a female body, the structure that's present below the bladder is the vagina and this is where the bladder falls. In severe cases, the bladder may even protrude through the vagina. The severity of the problem depends on the degree of weakness of the supports holding the bladder.
The patient will experience severe pain and discomfort. There will also be difficulty in passing urine. Urine may leak involuntarily, or some amount of urine will remain in the bladder even after voiding it. The predisposing factors of cystocele include excessive straining of the muscles of the bladder during childbirth and bowel movements, or lifting heavy objects. Muscle weakening can also occur after menopause due to the reduction in the amount of oestrogen, which is a hormone that helps in keeping the muscles strong.
The doctor will take a complete medical history including when the problem started, the severity of pain, the symptoms, and how it is affecting everyday life. As part of the physical examination, the doctor will examine your pelvis and vagina. In very severe cases of cystocele (grade 3), the protruded bladder can be seen at the vaginal opening. Your doctor will prescribe treatment depending on the severity of the protrusion.
The cystourethrogram is a test done when the patient is urinating. In this test, a catheter containing dye is inserted into the bladder through the urethra. X-rays are taken to see the flow of urine. This will enable your doctor to find out if the urine is flowing normally, or if there is any obstruction.
Fallen Bladder Surgery
Your doctor will prescribe surgery only if your condition is very severe. Surgery is essential in cases of bladder protrusion. It is usually done by an urologist, gynecologist or an urogynecologist. During the surgery, the bladder is placed back into its normal position by tightening the connective tissue that holds the bladder or with the help of a sling.