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What should you expect from rectal prolapse surgery?

A:

Quick Answer

In most cases, patients can expect rectal prolapse surgery to improve prolapse symptoms and reduce uncontrollable bowel movements, explains Mayo Clinic. Most patients also experience fewer instances of constipation; however, doctors recommend addressing constipation causes before rectal prolapse surgery because some patients experience increased constipation after the procedure.

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Full Answer

After surgery, the patient spends at least one night in the hospital, according to Mayo Clinic. Most patients can resume their normal activities within four to six weeks. In some cases, a patient may need a physical therapist to help him relearn how to use his pelvic floor muscles. All patients should eat fiber-rich diets, use stool softeners and drink plenty of fluids to avoid any straining that may cause possible relapses.

During rectal prolapse surgery, the surgeon may conduct a rectopexy through the abdomen, states Mayo Clinic. Depending on the cause of the prolapse, the surgeon may instead choose to go through the anus to complete a perineal rectosigmoidectomy or repair the problem using the Delorme procedure. Rectal prolapse recurrence is more common in patients who have perineal surgeries, but it only occurs in 2 to 5 percent of patients.

Before surgery, a patient with a rectal prolapse may experience pain when defecating or feel something extrude from the anus when wiping, notes eMedicineHealth. The tissue protruding from the anus may bleed or discharge mucus. Large prolapses may cause the patient to lose the impulse to defecate. As the prolapse progresses, it may extrude through the anus when the patient coughs or sneezes.

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