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Rectal Prolapse

Rectal prolapse is where part of the bowel protrudes out from the back passage. We see rectal prolapse that ranges from affecting only the rectum lining to full-thickness prolapse of all layers of the rectum. Prolapse often causes symptoms of pain, the passage of mucus or blood, constipation, incontinence and difficulty opening the bowels.

For patients with mucosal prolapse, there are several treatments we perform. These include conservative management with optimisation of your diet, laxatives, and the use of a medical elastic type band placed over the area of prolapse to reduce it. Sometimes surgery can be offered for mucosal prolapse, and this can be discussed with you.

Where there is full-thickness rectal prolapse, conservative measures including diet and laxatives are commenced, but usually, surgery is required. We offer several different types of surgery for full-thickness rectal prolapse. These include those with an operation from the perineum above the anus or through the abdomen. The perineal operations aim to either reduce and stitch up the prolapse called a Delorme’s procedure or resect the piece of bowel prolapsing out from the bottom end, the Altmeier’s procedure. The abdominal approach aims to lift the rectum from the inside, a rectopexy, with either sutures or biological material, usually performed with keyhole surgery. We will discuss all these various options with you. 

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