This operation corrects vaginal vault prolapse (a prolapse involving the top of the vagina) for patients who have undergone a hysterectomy (womb removal) in the past.
For patients who do not wish to have vaginal penetrative sex in the future, colpocleisis can be a very effective, minimally invasive and relatively low risk procedure.
Please note: Do not feel pressured to undergo this treatment if you wish to continue having vaginal sex. You should be open and honest with your specialist about your desires - other safe and effective treatments are available that will enable you to have penetrative sex. For more information visit our page on Vaginal Prolapse
What are the advantages of Colpocleisis?
This surgery is minimally invasive, only requiring operation on the vagina itself. This reduces recovery time, time spent in hospital and the level anaesthetic/pain relief required.
The success rate for this surgery is also very high - 95% success rate in fixing prolapse and removing symptoms.
Recurring Prolapse - This procedure does not always stop you from getting another prolapse, despite being highly effective in treating them.
Failure to cure symptoms - Sometimes your symptoms may continue despite the prolapse being fixed.
Bladder Problems - Incontinence usually improves following surgery, but can sometimes start or become worse. You can also develop stress incontinence.
Painful sexual Intercourse - This often improves with time.
Damage to nearby organs - This usually involves the bladder or bowel, but the risk is very low.
Pre/Post Procedure Instructions:
What happens before my surgery?
A pre-assessment appointment, a few days prior to your procedure, may also be required. This can involve having blood tests and a general health check-up. This is also a good opportunity to ask any questions about your surgery.
What should I expect following my Colpocleisis procedure?
You may be able to go home the same day as your procedure, before this:
Catheter - You may need a catheter to drain the bladder. This is usually removed the morning after surgery or later the same day.
Once you can eat drink and pass urine comfortably you can go home.
Hospital stay will usually last one to two days. We can provide a sick note if required.
It is important to start light exercises and activities, and to follow any advice you have been given. This will reduce the risk of clots.
You will likely feel tired and need rest during the day. This will improve over the course of a month or so.
You may require a certificate for your employer to return to work.
Colpocleisis - Specialists
Dr Pallavi Latthe
Consultant Gynaecologist and subspecialist Urogynaecologist
Dr Pallavi is an accredited subspecialist in urogynaecology and a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at the Birmingham Women’s NHS Foundation Trust.
She is the clinical lead for Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology in the Trust.