Sacral Colpopexy

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What is sacral colpopexy?

Sacral colpopexy is a surgical procedure used to correct a prolapsed vagina.

What are the benefits?

The procedure should help you to be more active. You might be able to resume your normal level of activity without leaking urine. Bulging and pressure sensations in the vagina will be relieved.

What are the risks associated with this procedure?

  • Damage to a vein or artery that could cause serious bleeding
  • Making a hole in my bladder or rectum that could cause a tract (fistula) between my vagina and bladder or rectum
  • That my bulging vagina (vaginal prolapse) may not improve or could return
  • That I may have difficulty emptying my bladder
  • That I may develop bulging in my rectum (rectocele) or my bladder (cystocele)
  • That I may develop infection in my incision or the area around my vagina that could require antibiotics or removal of the graft.
  • That I may have pain in my hip
  • That rarely part of the mesh may erode into my vagina and make it necessary to have part of it removed by another operation through my vagina
  • That I may develop numbness in my legs

How do I prepare for sacral colpopexy?

Follow your health care provider's instructions about not smoking before and after the procedure. Smokers heal more slowly after surgery. They are also more likely to have breathing problems during surgery. For this reason, if you are a smoker, you should quit at least 2 weeks before the procedure. It is best to quit 6 to 8 weeks before surgery. Also, your wounds will heal much better if you do not smoke after surgery.

Follow any other instructions your provider gives you. If you are to have general anesthesia, eat a light meal, such as soup or salad, the night before midnight. Do not even drink coffee, tea, or water.

What happens after the procedure?

First, you should plan for your rest and care after the procedure. You may stay in the hospital about 1 to 2 days. The catheter may stay in your bladder 2 to 6 days or until your bladder is working again.

During the first 4 weeks after the operation, you may have some small, sometimes bloody drainage from your vagina. After you leave the hospital, avoid all heavy activity such as lifting for the first 2 weeks. Then follow your provider's recommendations for gradually increasing your activity.  Ask what other steps you should take and schedule follow-up visits with your health care provider.

When should I call Greenville OB/GYN?                 

Call our emergency number at any time if:

  • You have a fever over 100 F (37.8 C).
  • You have heavy bleeding from your vagina.
  • The catheter becomes plugged and you stop passing urine.

Call during regular office hours if:

  • You have questions about the procedure or its result.
  • You want to make another appointment.

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