A urogynecologist is a doctor who is specially trained to treat women with both gynecologic issues as well as problems concerning urology. This medical field of urogynecology did not exist until 2011, so it is a relatively new medical profession. Urogynecologists treat many issues so women only need to see one doctor instead of multiple ones. If you are having issues with any pelvic floor disorders or with incontinence, when should you consider urogynecology surgery?
What Do Urogynecologists Treat?
Many women are embarrassed and hesitate to admit they suffer with certain female problems. They may think there are no treatments. These are the very specialties a urogynecologist like Dr. Apostolis can diagnose and treat.
They include the following:
- Incontinence of the bladder and rectum
- Urge incontinence
- Overactive bladder
- Interstitial cystitis
- Prolapse of the uterus, bladder, or cervix
- Frequent urinary tract infections (UTI)
Choosing a Urogynecologist
When seeking a professional urogynecologist, always be sure they are board certified in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery.
What Are Pelvic Floor Disorders?
Your pelvic floor is a group of muscles, ligaments, and tissue that sit at the lowest part of your pelvis. They provide the support for internal organs like the bowel, bladder, uterus, vagina, and rectum. One in three women will develop pelvic floor disorders.
Sometimes due to childbirth, pregnancy, strenuous activities, menopause, aging, and pelvic surgery, the support becomes weakened or damaged.
When you have a pelvic floor disorder, you might have issues with bladder or bowel control, or have protrusion of parts of the vagina or uterus through the vaginal opening. All this can result in pelvic organ prolapse when these organs actually fall down.
How Are Pelvic Floor Disorders Treated?
The goal of urogynecology is to improve the overall function of the pelvic floor.
Dr. Apostolis will create a custom treatment plan for you at our office in Akron. Treatment often consist of both non-surgical and surgical procedures.
Your urogynecologist may recommend you begin Kegel exercises, you might be referred to a pelvic floor physical therapist, get Botox injections for bladder control, medications may be prescribed, and a pessary may be recommended. This helps with prolapse and bladder control.
Some surgical procedures are minimally invasive and can be performed at an outpatient facility or with one night spent in a hospital. It is important to discuss the benefits of a surgical procedure with Dr. Apostolis prior to making a decision. They can include one or a combination of the following:
- Rebuilding the pelvic floor support
- Repairing prolapse
- Removing the uterus
- Minimally invasive mesh midurethral sling for urinary leakage
- Damage control for anal or sphincter muscles