Robotic Surgery for Prolapse
Pelvic organ prolapse is a condition caused by the failure of weakened muscles and connective tissue in a woman’s pelvis. As the muscles and tissues in the pelvic floor stretch or tear, pelvic organs — including the uterus, cervix, bladder, rectum and small bowel — lose their support and fall from their normal position to the vaginal canal. Women can experience pelvic organ prolapse due to a wide variety of reasons. Some women are genetically predisposed, with family history being a risk factor. While the natural aging process, including menopause, makes women over the age of 60 more susceptible, among younger women prolapse is often associated with trauma from vaginal childbirth. It can be a complication of systemic illness such as lupus, or chronic conditions like coughing and constipation. Smoking, obesity or excessive exercise are also risk factors.
Robotically assisted laparoscopic surgery
In severe cases of pelvic organ prolapse, diagnosed as Stage III and Stage IV, surgery is often recommended. UCLA urology specialists offer a full range of surgical options for patients, providing the least invasive treatment to match the patient’s specific diagnosis and needs. The operation may be done through the vagina or an incision may be made in the abdominal wall. UCLA pioneered many of the innovations now considered the standards of care worldwide for such conditions as vaginal and uterine prolapse, as well as other pelvic floor disorders. More than 12,000 pelvic reconstruction procedures have been conducted at UCLA in the past 25 years. Today, UCLA is a leader in laparoscopic abdominal pelvic floor reconstruction, including robotically assisted laparoscopic techniques, which have been shown to be among the most advanced, safest and most durable methods of correcting pelvic organ prolapse with quick recovery. Robotically assisted laparoscopic surgery is a state-of-the-art approach that is rapidly gaining popularity among gynecologists and urologists. At UCLA, doctors use the latest model of the da Vinci Robot to correct uterine or vaginal vault prolapse. The da Vinci Robot provides high resolution, 3-D visualization with enhanced wrist movement to provide superior precision. Advantages of robotically assisted surgery include smaller incisions, less postoperative pain, better cosmetic results and quicker recovery. Patients are routinely discharged after one night. UCLA also offers open surgery for pelvic organ prolapse. Advantages include greater visualization and dexterity for delicate and complex reconstructive procedures.