What is a Laparoscopic Vault Suspension?
A Laparoscopic Vault Suspension is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure that is used to treat cases of vaginal vault prolapse. The aim of the surgery is to repair and support the vaginal vault in a way that does not interfere with vaginal capacity or sexual intercourse.
What is a Vaginal Vault Prolapse?
A vaginal vault prolapse occurs when the upper section of the vagina slips or drops into the vaginal canal. The prolapse generally occurs as a result of weakened or damaged pelvic muscles and tissues. Symptoms include vaginal heaviness or pressure, backache, the sense of something protruding into the vaginal canal or out of the vagina, and urinary incontinence, amongst others.
If you identify with any of these symptoms, please contact Dr G for an evaluation. With years of experience in the field and advanced medical equipment, he will be able to diagnose your condition accurately, discuss different treatment options with you, and advise you on the best course of action to take. Since a vaginal vault prolapse is sometimes accompanied by the prolapse of other pelvic organs (such as the bladder, rectum, urethra, or small bowel), do discuss each and every symptom you suspect you have in detail. Dr G may be able to correct concurrent problems while treating your prolapse.
How is Laparoscopic Vault Suspension performed?
The team of specialists assigned to your case will include an anaesthetist who will place you under general anaesthesia before the surgery begins. After all standard pre-operative procedures have been concluded, Dr G will make small incisions in your lower abdomen. A thin, tubular medical device with a mini-camera attached at one end (called a laparoscope) will be passed through one of these incisions. He will then proceed to reattach the prolapsed vaginal roof to higher section of the uterosacral ligaments with permanent stitches. There is no synthetic mesh used during this surgery. This procedure focuses on replicating the actual anatomical support that the vaginal vault normally receives.
Benefits of Laparoscopic Vault Suspension Over Abdominal Surgery
Laparoscopy, also known as keyhole surgery, has several advantages over open surgery. The laparoscopic approach to vaginal vault prolapse surgery is preferred to the abdominal (open surgery approach) because it:
- leaves you in less pain
- is less invasive
- necessitates a shorter period of hospitalization
- leads to a faster recovery
- causes minimal scarring
- has a lower risk of complications
What are the risks associated with Laparoscopic Vault Suspension?
Like all other forms of surgery, a Laparoscopic Vault Suspension can carry risks. These are rare, and include:
- Injury to surrounding structures like ureters, bowel and bladder
- Mild pain for one to two months
- Urinary problems (like incontinence or retention)
- Formation of fistulae (abnormal openings or connections between organs)
If you are worried about developing any post-surgical problems, discuss your thoughts with Dr G. Based on his experience, your medical history, and the extent of your problem, he will be able to tell you what risks you run — if any.
Alternatives to Laparoscopic Vault Suspension
A vaginal vault prolapse can also be treated through sacrocolpopexy — a surgical procedure that involves using a piece of soft mesh to re-suspend the vaginal vault. For more information, please visit our page on Laparoscopic Sacrocolpopexy Procedure.