Not the surgery for a young person: women's experience with vaginal closure surgery for severe prolapse

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Publication Date


Document Type



*Adaptation, Psychological; Age Factors; Aged; Aged, 80 and over; *Attitude to Health; Awareness; Communication Barriers; Female; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Humans; Loneliness; Middle Aged; Nurse's Role; Nursing Methodology Research; Perioperative Care; Pessaries; Qualitative Research; Quality of Life; Questionnaires; Recovery of Function; Sexuality; Shame; Trust; Uterine Prolapse; Women


Obstetrics and Gynecology


INTRODUCTION: Vaginal prolapse can be debilitating, due to pelvic organ prolapse and herniation of the bladder, uterus, intestines and/or support tissues in the vaginal opening. However, there is little published information that documents women's experiences in the months and years after surgery to correct prolapse.

OBJECTIVE: This phenomenologic study aimed to increase understanding of the specific experiences that patients report after vaginal closure surgery.

METHOD: Participants were recruited via a mailing to surgical patients from a large urogynecologic practice. Semi-structured interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed for analysis.

RESULTS: Six women participated in the study. After analyzing the results, five major themes emerged: awareness and confusion, feeling alone in silence, trusting recommendation, acceptance of changed sexuality, and still coping.

CONCLUSIONS: This small study shows that vaginal closure affects an intimate body part and can impact self-image, but the women did not regret their changed sexuality. The larger issues for these women were ones of communication, information, and isolation, particularly during their followup care.


Urol Nurs. 2005 Oct;25(5):345-51.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Urologic nursing

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Link to Article in PubMed

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