Colpocleisis (Vaginal Shortening)

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The colpocleisis procedure corrects pelvic organ prolapse. Fixing the falling and bulging of your uterus, vagina, or bladder can give you relief and restore confidence.

At UVA, our expert surgeons have experience and skill in treating women just like you. Our team will work with you to give you the care and clarity you need.  

Colpocleisis Results

We don't recommend this surgery if you want to have vaginal sexual intercourse. During the procedure, we stitch together the walls of the vagina. This shortens and somewhat closes the vaginal opening.

If you don't want vaginal intercourse, however, you may find colpocleisis ideal. This surgery works well to stop pressure, discomfort, bladder and bowel leakage from weak muscles and tendons. It can also prevent further prolapse.

Benefits of Colpocleisis

This procedure offers you a dependable path to end your prolapse symptoms. It is:

  • Safe
  • Effective
  • Fast
  • Performed without any cuts, with a quick recovery, with few complications
  • A same-day surgery

The procedure is good for women who are older, have medical issues, and can't have other operations. 

What to Expect

During this outpatient procedure, your surgeon makes an opening in the vagina and reinforces the tissue layer under the vaginal skin with strong sutures. This procedure also narrows the vaginal opening. The stitches dissolve within few months and don't need to be removed. 

Typically it takes 2-3 weeks to recover. Your doctor may prescribe medication to help with pain.

You'll have a follow-up appointment with your physician between 4-6 weeks after surgery.

Possible Surgery Complications

Possible surgery risks include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Damage to bowel
  • Pain with intercourse
  • Difficulty with bowel movements
  • Failure of the surgery
  • Blood clot in the legs or lungs (rare)