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Apr 3, 2014

Healthy Living has the tips on how to treat an embarrassing health condition for women

There are some bodily functions that – as adults – we are just expected to always be in control of. In fact, once you are passed the toddler stage, it may seem simply inexcusable that an adult may not be able to control when they need to “go.” Right? Well, wrong. Tonight in Healthy Living, we’ll tell you more about a very common and embarrassing problem that some women face and the opportunities available to help them.

 

Marleni Cuellar reporting

It’s estimated that about 50% of women over the age of 50 will experience symptoms of prolapse. The symptoms are usually the kind that are a bit uncomfortable to talk about. Dr Tracey Nicholas is an OBGYN at KHMH who says that most times; it’s through consultations that they find out the problems and concerns women are experiencing.

 

Dr. Tracey Nicholas, OB/GYN

Dr. Tracey Nicholas

“Prolapse means that any of the structures, female structures basically start coming down, they’ve lost  the support of the pelvic floor muscle that keep it secure and supported and so they actually pull down. It may actually come so far down that it may actually start to protrude out of the vagina as well. When there is actual damage to this floor and that can occur for several reasons….these structures actually start falling down. If you have damage to the front section then you have the bladder coming forward like this and you can actually see it or feel it through the vaginal opening and you can also have the rectal and last but not least you have the womb. You can actually see it sometimes outside of the vagina itself.”

 

When the pelvic floor muscle no longer supports these structures as it should, then the symptoms begin to occur.

 

Dr. Tracey Nicholas

“They have difficulty passing their urine, they find that they have to keep on going back to pass the urine, because some of it has been lodged in a little ‘cul de sac’ in a way. They have repeated bladder infection; there is stasis of the urine. With  the whom coming down, they feel a dragging sensation, they feel a bulge and they feel lower back pain and it gets worse the longer they stand or sit throughout the day; so once they lie down the sensation goes away, when the rectum Is coming down they will also complain of more pain or they will need to insert a finger into the vagina to completely empty the rectum itself.”

 

Pelvic floor damage that affects the bladder, can also cause another problem called stress incontinence.

 

Dr. Tracey Nicholas

“Stress incontinence is where you have involuntary loss of urine you are not planning on passing an urine but it happen when you laugh, you sneeze, you cough, you change position, you exercise, you have sex and this causes some social discomfort and some hygienic problems as well.”

 

Age, is only one factor for prolapse, Caucasians & Hispanics are more at risk and it does also run in the family. People with chronic coughs – like smokers and those who do a lot of heavy lifting are also at risk. The most common attributed cause is pregnancy & childbirth.

 

Dr. Tracey Nicholas

“Pregnancy because there is an increase weight and that causes a strain, think of it like an elastic itself and it gets stretched. Birth because you have large babies, we have to use instrumentation to expedite the delivery.  There is prolonged pushing; all of this put strain on the pelvic floor muscle, it can tear, it can get damaged and the muscle itself.”

 

Now, lifestyle changes, kegels (pelvic floor exercise) weight loss may minimize damage to the pelvic floor and medication & surgeries are other treatments. However, that specific expertise, in terms of surgeries, was not available in Belize.  In May, however, there will be a visiting medical team that will be able to offer much needed relief.

 

Dr. Tracey Nicholas

“Were having a set of URO gynecologist coming to Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital to address the issues of uterine or pelvic organ prolapse as well as stress incontinence. An Area that we have not been able to address with the public, an area that we can be treated and we would like to get the patients so that we can help them whether it is medical or surgical management. But we have the expertise to help you at that point in time. It’s not something that you did per say. It is not something that you need to isolate yourself from your friends and family. It is something that we can treat and you can go on to have a better quality of life because that’s what’s happening to most of the persons with it. They are embarrassed or they are shy, they have stopped doing stuff that they would ordinarily do because they are afraid of what may happen. We can treat this.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Healthy Living has the tips on how to treat an embarrassing health condition for women”

  1. What about Squats, Doc? says:

    Great great great story. Kudos to women for the strength to bear heavy burdens in life amidst their role as birthers to the next generation and as stress absorbers for their husbands.

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