Uterine prolapse occurs when the uterus drops downwards (hysteroptosis or hysterocele) through the vagina. During its descent, it often drags the bladder (cystocele) and sometimes also the rectum (rectocele) downwards. Although in some cases uterine prolapse does not cause any problems, in others it can be associated with a heavy feeling in the genital organs, problems during sexual intercourse, constipation, fluid retention or urinary incontinence.
This latter disorder, when present, is the most severe from a hygiene and social perspective. It is important to make a distinction between stress incontinence (unintentional urine loss under physical stress, such as coughing, sneezing, lifting heavy loads, etc.) and urge incontinence (loss of urine after an intense urge to urinate): stress incontinence requires surgical correction, whereas urge incontinence is treated with medication.