What it is, how it manifests, and can physical therapy can help.
A rectocele is a type of prolapse referring specifically to the rectum, in which the rectum begins to sag into the posterior vaginal wall. This differs from a rectal prolapse, in which the rectum slips downward on itself. Prolapse occurs when the pelvic organs are no longer resting in their normal position, and rest lower than their intended location. Common symptoms of rectocele include a sensation of heaviness/pressure in the pelvic floor, a feeling of something “falling” in the vagina, or the need to manually push upward on the perineum to help fully empty the rectum. It is more common to experience this if you have a history of pregnancy and/or vaginal delivery, or a history of constipation and straining with bowel movements.
Pelvic health physical therapy can help address specific dysfunctions and provide extensive education and exercises that can help to eliminate, reduce, or manage your symptoms. Depending on the stage of prolapse, surgery may be recommended, but even if this is the case, physical therapy is still strongly recommended both prior to and after surgery to ensure best long term surgical outcomes.
Mendwell is a Pelvic Health Physical Therapy clinic serving patients in Portland, Lake Oswego, Beaverton, and Tigard. Our team of specialists are passionate about helping patients improve pelvic function, relieve pain, and get back to feeling their best. Reach out to learn how we can help.