Cystocele vs Rectocele vs Enterocele: Understanding Pelvic Organ Prolapse

Oct 10, 2019

When it comes to pelvic organ prolapse, understanding the differences between cystocele, rectocele, and enterocele is crucial. These conditions can have a significant impact on a person's quality of life, but with the right information, treatment options, such as surgery, can be explored.

The Difference Between Cystocele, Rectocele, and Enterocele

Cystocele: A cystocele occurs when the wall between a woman's bladder and her vagina weakens, causing the bladder to drop or bulge into the vagina. This can lead to symptoms such as urinary incontinence, frequent urinary tract infections, and pelvic pressure.

Rectocele: A rectocele happens when the wall between the rectum and the vagina weakens, allowing the rectum to bulge into the vagina. Symptoms of a rectocele may include difficulty with bowel movements, constipation, and a sensation of pressure in the pelvis.

Enterocele: An enterocele is a type of pelvic organ prolapse where the small intestine pushes down into the vaginal wall. This condition can lead to lower back pain, a feeling of pelvic pressure, and discomfort during sexual intercourse.

Treatment Options for Cystocele, Rectocele, and Enterocele

For mild cases of cystocele, rectocele, or enterocele, conservative treatment options such as pelvic floor exercises, lifestyle modifications, and the use of pessaries may be recommended. However, in more severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the prolapse and restore normal pelvic anatomy.

Cystocele and Rectocele Repair Surgery: Surgical procedures for cystocele and rectocele typically involve the use of a synthetic mesh to support the weakened pelvic floor tissues. During the surgery, the prolapsed organs are repositioned and the mesh is used to provide additional support to prevent recurrence.

When considering surgery for enterocele, the approach may vary depending on the specific underlying cause of the condition. Surgeons may opt for techniques such as sacrocolpopexy or transvaginal mesh placement to address the enterocele and provide long-term support to the pelvic organs.

Recovery and Follow-Up Care

Following cystocele, rectocele, or enterocele repair surgery, patients will require a period of recovery to allow the body to heal properly. It is essential to follow post-operative instructions provided by your healthcare team and attend scheduled follow-up appointments to monitor progress and address any concerns.

Pelvic organ prolapse is a common condition that can significantly impact a person's quality of life. By understanding the differences between cystocele, rectocele, and enterocele, individuals can make informed decisions about their treatment options and take steps towards improving their pelvic health.


In conclusion, cystocele, rectocele, and enterocele are different forms of pelvic organ prolapse that can have a profound impact on an individual's well-being. Treatment options such as surgery can provide relief and improve quality of life for those affected by these conditions. If you are experiencing symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, it is essential to consult with a healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis and to discuss the best treatment approach for your specific situation.

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