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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Minerva Ginecologica 2007 December;59(6):601-12

language: English

Pelvic organ prolapse: a review of the current literature

South M., Amundsen C. L.

Division of Urogynecology and Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA


Pelvic organ prolapse has afflicted women since the beginning of mankind. Even though we have been faced with this problem for so many centuries, we still have not found a way to overcome gravity and prevent prolapse. We continue to make efforts to manage prolapse, modifying our techniques based on burgeoning research. This knowledge helps us to avoid repetitive complications from surgery and to improve techniques to prevent recurrent prolapse. In addition, we are constantly adapting our methods depending on available technology. With an aging population, the demand for physicians and surgeons trained in management of pelvic organ prolapse will increase. The rapidly evolving literature on pelvic organ prolapse makes a comprehensive review difficult. However, based on the current literature, randomized controlled trials are needed to compare new prolapse repair techniques to traditional techniques. Physicians specializing in surgical management of pelvic organ prolapse will need to work together to complete quality clinical trials. The primary focus of this review will be on the recent research concerning the epidemiology, etiology, presenting symptoms, and diagnosis of pelvic organ prolapse. We will also discuss the different types of prolapse by compartments of the vagina in which they occur and how each of these types of prolapse can be managed. Finally, we will review recent literature evaluating surgical repairs using transvaginal mesh kits.

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