Preparing for your appointmentBy Mayo Clinic staff
Your first appointment may be with your primary care provider or with a doctor who specializes in conditions affecting the female reproductive tract (gynecologist) or the reproductive tract and urinary system (urogynecologist, urologist).
What you can do
Here's some information to help you prepare for your appointment.
- Make a list of any symptoms you've had, and for how long.
- List your key medical information, including other conditions for which you're being treated and any medications, vitamins or supplements you're taking.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible, to help you remember all the information you'll receive.
- List questions to ask your doctor, putting them in order of importance, in case time runs out.
For small bowel prolapse, basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- Is the prolapse causing my symptoms?
- What are the goals of treatment in my case?
- What treatment approaches do you recommend?
- What is the risk of treating the prolapse compared with not treating the prolapse?
- What is the risk that this problem will recur at any time in the future?
- Do I need to follow any restrictions to prevent progression?
- Are there any self-care steps I can take?
- Should I see a specialist?
Don't hesitate to ask questions during your appointment if you don't understand something.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor may ask questions such as:
- What symptoms do you have?
- When did you first notice these symptoms?
- Have your symptoms gotten worse over time?
- Do you have pelvic pain? If yes, how severe is the pain?
- Does anything seem to trigger your symptoms, such as coughing or heavy lifting?
- Do you have urine leakage (urinary incontinence)?
- Have you had an ongoing (chronic) or severe cough?
- Is heavy lifting involved in your work or daily activities?
- Do you strain during bowel movements?
- Do you have any other medical conditions?
- What medications, vitamins or supplements do you take?
- Have you been pregnant and had vaginal deliveries?
- Do you wish to have children in the future?
- Lentz GM, et al. Comprehensive Gynecology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/linkTo?type=bookPage&isbn=978-0-323-06986-1&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-06986-1..C2009-0-48752-X--TOP. Accessed Oct. 30, 2012.
- Park AJ, et al. Clinical manifestations, diagnosis, and nonsurgical management of posterior vaginal defects. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Oct. 30, 2012.
- Rogers RG, et al. An overview of the epidemiology, risk factors, clinical manifestations, and management of pelvic organ prolapse in women. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Oct. 30, 2012.
- Hoffman BL, et al. Williams Gynecology. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=768. Accessed Oct. 31, 2012.
- Culligan PJ. Nonsurgical management of pelvic organ prolapse. Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2012;119:852.
- Hagen S, et al. Conservative management of pelvic organ prolapse. Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine. 2012;22:118.
- Gibbs RS, et al. Danforth's Obstetrics and Gynecology. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Wolters Kluwer Health Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008. http://www.danforthsobgyn.com. Accessed Oct. 31, 2012.
- Lightner DJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 15, 2012.