What Should You Expect After a Rectocele Surgery?

Patients undergoing surgery to repair a posterior prolapse, also called a rectocele, should expect some bleeding in the days following surgery, and need a urinary catheter for five days after surgery, says Memorial Sloan Kettering. Patients should take pain relievers, stool softeners and antibiotics during the healing period.

A posterior collapse occurs when the tissue that separates the vagina from the rectum weakens, causing the wall of the vagina to bulge or protrude, says MayoClinic. Individuals may experience this condition after childbirth, trauma, or due to repeated heavy lifting, obesity, or chronic cough or bronchitis.

Before considering surgery in most case of rectocele, physicians prescribe a course of exercises involving the Kegel muscles to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, says Mayo Clinic. Another non-surgical treatment involves the insertion of a pessary or rubber ring into the vagina to physically support the muscles in the pelvic region.

Patients who experience a serious posterior prolapse are candidates for surgery, which typically involves the removal of excess tissue. Sometimes a mesh patch is used to support and strengthen the area between the vagina and rectum, says Mayo Clinic. Doctors may recommend that women wait until they are done having children before having the surgery.