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How to Exercise After Cystocele Surgery

By Sandra Ketcham

A cystocele is a bulging of the bladder into the vagina. This condition occurs when the tissues between the vaginal wall and bladder stretch and weaken, often in response to straining during childbirth, heavy lifting, chronic constipation or violent and prolonged coughing, according to MayoClinic.com. When the cystocele is severe, surgery may be necessary to correct the organ displacement and enable normal functioning of the bladder and vagina.

Wait to resume activity until at least three weeks after your surgery. Your doctor may advise you to wait longer. The University of Virginia Health System states that normal physical activity, such as walking and climbing stairs, is generally acceptable within hours of your cystocele repair.

Perform Kegel exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles and prevent a recurrence of your cystocele. According to MayoClinic.com, the proper way to perform Kegel exercises is to identify the muscles you use to stop urine flow, pull in or contract those muscles for about three seconds, and then relax them. Ideally, you should aim for 15 repetitions at a time, three times each day.

Lift nothing heavier than 10 pounds for at least six weeks following your surgery. After that time, you may begin slowly lifting increasing amounts of weight, but avoid heavy weight training and straining to prevent a recurrence of your cystocele.

Increase the number of repetitions you are able to do when weight training instead of increasing the amount of weight you lift. If you must strain to lift a weight, it is too heavy and can trigger a return of your cystocele.

Engage in moderate-intensity aerobic exercise to keep your bowel habits regular, lose weight if necessary and improve your overall health. Try walking, riding a bike, swimming and using an exercise ball. A treadmill is a safe alternative to walking if you must exercise indoors.

Warnings

Report bleeding, increased pain or other symptoms to your doctor immediately. Also, let your doctor know if you experience a recurrence of your condition. It is not uncommon for a cystocele to recur, and heavy lifting increases this risk.

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