Pelvic organ prolapse also known as POP is a condition that affects many women. It occurs when the muscles and ligaments that support your pelvic organs (like the uterus, bladder and rectum) are stretched or damaged.

This condition can be uncomfortable or even painful for some women. The most common symptom associated with POP is abdominal or pelvic pressure that may feel similar to needing to have a bowel movement. Other symptoms include frequent urges to urinate, difficulty emptying your bladder completely and feeling a sense of pressure in your vaginal area.

What are the causes of pelvic organ prolapse?

  • Childbirth

Childbirth is one of the leading causes of pelvic organ prolapse. As more women have children, there is an increasing number of women with pelvic organ prolapse due to weakened muscles from childbirth. Pelvic organ prolapse affects about 15% of women in their lifetime.


  • Age

As we age, our bodies change in many ways: our bone density decreases, our muscle mass loses strength, and our connective tissue becomes more brittle. All of these changes can cause issues with pelvic organ prolapse.


  • Hysterectomy

A hysterectomy is a procedure where the doctor removes the uterus from a woman’s body.

You may be at risk for developing pelvic organ prolapse if you have had a hysterectomy in which your cervix was removed or you had an ovary removed. This is because these surgeries can cause the ligaments to stretch or weaken, which affects how well they support your pelvic organs.


  • Obesity

The risk of developing POP rises with increasing body weight. This is because increased abdominal pressure on the pelvic floor leads to structural changes in this region, which makes them more vulnerable to POP.


While obesity isn’t the only factor that contributes to this condition, it does make it more likely for you to develop POP. In fact, studies show that women who are overweight or obese are up to eight times more likely to suffer from this condition than women who have normal body weights. The reason for this increased risk is due primarily to how fat accumulates in our bodies: if you’re carrying too much weight around your abdomen and hips, it pushes down on your pelvis and puts strain on these muscles. This can lead them over time to weaken and lose their ability to hold everything together properly.


  • Menopause

Menopause is a natural part of life. It happens when you go through the change at around age 50, where your ovaries stop producing hormones that help regulate your menstrual cycle.

Pelvic organ prolapse (or POC) is one of the most common conditions women experience after menopause. One of the reasons for this is that lower estrogen levels directly correlate with lower collagen levels, which are essential to keeping pelvic tissues intact.


If you think POP is affecting your quality of life and want to learn more about treatment options, call today! For pelvic organ prolapse treatment in Phoenix, Gilbert and Chandler, AZ visit Desert Sky Urology.