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what exactly is a rectocele? what exactly is a rectocele?

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Unread 01-18-2005, 08:55 AM
what exactly is a rectocele?

Hi ladies,
My doctor found a rectocele on my last exam. I don't think I'm symptomatic from it, so I'm not worried about it, but I would like to know what the symptoms are and if I will likely need another surgery in the future to repair it. The only symptom that I have been having, and I'm SO SORRY for the details, but it seems that when I have a BM, it seems like it has a hard time making the last little turn. Again, so sorry for the details. This isn't causing me any life altering problems, so I wouldn't do anything about it at this point...anything to avoid more surgery...but I was wondering if this is a coincidence or maybe a small effect from the rectocele.

For those of you who have had repairs, what do they do to fix it? What causes it (After hysterectomy)?

Thanks a bunch!
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Unread 01-18-2005, 11:28 AM

I don't know exactly what causes it, but from what I understand it is some sort of blockage that is caused from pressure of another body organ.

This would be a great topic for you to discuss with your dr. I had posterior repair when I was in surgery, and so far, before or after surgery I can't tell a difference in BM's...pain vs no pain, type of thing...

I hope you don't have to have another surgery, but if you do, and it helps, then I hope it goes well and you recovery fully and finally feel great!

Best Wishes,
Unread 01-18-2005, 12:32 PM
what exactly is a rectocele?

This is the information I found....

A rectocele occurs when the end of the large intestine (rectum) pushes through the back wall of the vagina. An enterocele occurs when the small intestine pushes through the upper wall of the vagina. Rectoceles and enteroceles develop if the lower pelvic muscles become damaged by pregnancy, labor, childbirth, or a previous pelvic surgery, or when the muscles are weakened by aging. A rectocele or an enterocele can be present at birth (congenital), though this is rare

I had a rectocele and had it repaired when I had my hysterectomy. My symtoms were basically having a hard time going. I had to make two trips to the bathroom to finish the job. I had large babies and my dr. says that is why it happened to me.
I feel much better now -- although after the surgery it took a little longer to heal than I expected-- and I am glad I had the procedure done. Hope this helps some.
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Unread 01-19-2005, 08:09 AM
what exactly is a rectocele?

I had rectocele repair with my TVH and cystocele repair.
It is a prolapse of the rectum due to an injury during childbirth, chronic constipation, heavy lifting and/or a weakening of the pelvic floor. My symptoms, which I had for years before my surgery, were... a feeling of a bulge into the vagina and difficulty having bowel movements. When mine worsened, I could actually see it with a mirror. It was a little pink protrusion from the vagina. My doctor said that I shouldn't have waited so long to have something done about it and that they do tend to get worse if left untreated. During the TVH and bladder repair, the surgeon pulled up the rectum with stitches inside the vagina. He described the entire procedure as kind of like a face lift for the vagina. Once again, we are all different and your doc is your best source of information.

I got mine from delivering twins TWICE, a bad episiotomy, constipation and since I'm a farm girl lifting bags of grain, soil , bales of hay, and lots of other things that weighed almost as much as me!! Guess I'll be more careful of that after all of this!!
Good Luck!
Unread 01-19-2005, 08:30 AM
what exactly is a rectocele?

I never thought about the potential for an episiotomy increasing the chance of it!!! I had really really fast deliveries, so they did LARGE episiotomies (what episiotomy doesn't feel large, though ) to allow for the quick births (I'm talking two pushes for my first and one push for my second...too bad the pregnancies didn't go that fast!!!). My sister, who's an RN, formerly an OB delivery nurse, attended my last childbirth, and even she told me later that she kept thinking "why is he still cutting?" I always assumed that they healed well, except for a small bump under one of the sutures that is still there two years later.

I've never had a constipation issue, quite frankly I tend toward the other direction, though it isn't bad at all. I had done the "doody" before I left the hospital from my hyster. I don't think that would contribute to it.

However, I had to have a bladder suspension with my hyster, and I'm still pretty young to need it (29), so that indicates to me some fairly profound pelvic relaxation, so that could definately be a factor.

For now, I'm able to have a BM by only shifting positions (TMI???) so I will probably leave it alone as long as I can. I have a desk job, and the heaviest I lift is a 30-pound toddler, so if it doesn't get worse, I'm going to ignore it. I didn't know it was there until the exam, so it can't be that bad. I just wanted to know what it was and what there was to do about it.

Thanks ladies...as always, you're wonderful!!!
Unread 01-19-2005, 08:42 AM
what exactly is a rectocele?

I had a rectocele repaired with my hysterectomy. I had all the syptoms sisters have described - only worse. I could hardly have BMs at all without having to support my perineum (sorry if TMI - it felt like the BM was goign to come out my vagina)

Having the repair done is not very pleasant - my experience only I guess. It was by far the most painful aspect of the hyst surgery. It involves cutting open the perineum (so it is basically like an episiotomy that goes all the way) then stitching the vaginal walls back together more strongly.

Although it is caused by part of the bowel prolapsing into the vagina; the weakness is in the vaginal walls; I don't think it is a bowel/rectum problem at all. It just felt that way for years. I put up mine for ages; but in the end it was just too much - I had a huge red bulge and felt like I was sitting on a tennis ball sometimes!

Hope you feel better soon
Unread 01-19-2005, 08:51 AM
what exactly is a rectocele?

To 5150: Two sets of Twins?? YIPES! Now THAT's childbirth!!

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