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Anterior Vaginal Repair
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
- An anterior vaginal wall repair is also called an anterior (front) colporrhaphy. This procedure is done to correct a defect or damage in the anterior vaginal wall. A damaged vaginal wall may cause stress urinary incontinence or cystocele (bladder prolapse). Stress urinary incontinence is a condition where urine leaks before you are able to reach the toilet. This is due to sudden extra pressure put on the bladder. Small amounts of urine may escape during activities, such as laughing, coughing, and sports. A cystocele happens when the pubocervical fascia supporting the bladder becomes weak. This fascia is the fibrous layer under the vaginal skin that provides support to the bladder. The weakening causes the bladder cystocele to protrude or extend into the vagina and cause urinary incontinence.
- In anterior vaginal wall repair, an incision (cut) is made through the skin of the vagina. This will show the damage in the anterior vaginal wall, particularly in the supporting fascia. During this procedure, the vaginal skin is separated from the fascia. The damaged fascia is then folded and sutured (stitched) to pull up the bladder into a more fixed position. This procedure is done to prevent the bladder from moving down and urine from leaking.
- Keep a current list of your medicines: Include the amounts, and when, how, and why you take them. Take the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency. Throw away old medicine lists. Use vitamins, herbs, or food supplements only as directed.
- Take your medicine as directed: Call your primary healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not working as expected. Tell him about any medicine allergies, and if you want to quit taking or change your medicine.
- Antibiotics: This medicine is given to fight or prevent an infection caused by bacteria. Always take your antibiotics exactly as ordered by your primary healthcare provider. Do not stop taking your medicine unless directed by your primary healthcare provider. Never save antibiotics or take leftover antibiotics that were given to you for another illness.
- Pain medicine: You may need medicine to take away or decrease pain.
- Learn how to take your medicine. Ask what medicine and how much you should take. Be sure you know how, when, and how often to take it.
- Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine. Tell caregivers if your pain does not decrease.
- Pain medicine can make you dizzy or sleepy. Prevent falls by calling someone when you get out of bed or if you need help.
Ask for information about where and when to go for follow-up visits:
For continuing care, treatments, or home services, ask for more information.
- Ask your caregiver about doing Kegel exercises: These exercises squeeze your pelvic floor muscles and help them become stronger. Ask your caregiver when to start doing these exercises.
- Avoid too much pressure in your abdomen (stomach): Do not strain, lift heavy objects, or stand for a very long time. Do not perform strenuous exercises, such as running and weight lifting.
- Begin walking as soon as possible: Do not stay in bed for too long. Caregivers may have you start walking within a few days after the procedure.
You may need a Foley catheter. A Foley catheter is a tube that is put into your bladder to drain your urine into a bag. The bladder is an organ where urine is kept. The catheter may make you feel like you have to urinate. If you are able to relax, the catheter will drain the urine for you. When the catheter is taken out, you can urinate on your own. Ask your caregiver for more information about self-catheterization.
- Do not pull on the catheter because this will make you hurt or bleed.
- Do not kink the catheter because the urine will not be able to drain out.
- Do not lift the bag of urine above your waist. If you do this the urine will flow back into your bladder, and may cause an infection.
Rest when you need to while you heal after surgery.
Slowly start to do more each day. Return to your daily activities as directed.
Manage your stress:
Stress may slow healing and lead to illness. Learn ways to control stress, such as relaxation, deep breathing, and music. Talk to someone about things that upset you.
You may need to wear support socks. These socks may help decrease the swelling in your legs until you are walking more. They may also keep blood from staying in your legs and causing clots.
When you are allowed to bathe or shower, carefully wash the incision (cuts) with soap and water. Afterwards, put on a clean, new sanitary pad. Change your sanitary pad any time it gets wet or dirty. Ask your caregivers for more information about wound care.
CONTACT A CAREGIVER IF:
- You are soaking a vaginal pad hourly with blood for four hours.
- You have a fever.
- You have chills, a cough, or feel weak and achy.
- You have nausea (upset stomach) or vomiting (throwing up).
- You have discharge or pain in the area where the urine catheter was inserted.
- You have chest pain or trouble breathing that is getting worse over time.
- You have questions or concerns about your procedure, illness, or medicine.
SEEK CARE IMMEDIATELY IF:
- You feel something is bulging out into your vagina or rectum (rear end) and not going back in.
- You have any of the following problems:
- Blood is present in your urine or catheter.
- You are unable to pass urine.
- Pain when passing urine or having sex.
- You have pain in the vagina that does not go away even after taking pain medicines.
- Your incision has pus or a foul-smelling odor.
- You suddenly feel lightheaded and have trouble breathing.
- You have new and sudden chest pain. You may have more pain when you take deep breaths or cough. You may cough up blood.
- Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
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