Comparison Of Pessaries And Pelvic Belts | Pros and Cons
Coping with pelvic organ prolapse usually requires a variety of treatment methods. You may need to change your diet or add a few regular activities to relieve symptoms. In some cases, your doctor may recommend using a pessary or a pelvic belt for additional support.
What are these devices, and which is best for your situation? Here’s what you should know.
The Big Difference Between Pessaries and Pelvic Belts
Simply put, pessaries are meant to be worn internally, while pelvic belts sit snugly against the body. Both products come in various styles and designs that have different purposes. Each one depends on your need for additional support.
Pessaries are designed to provide support for specific organs that are prolapsing into the vagina, while a pelvic belt can support different muscle groups of the lower abdomen and pelvis. Although there is some overlap in the types of support that they provide, a pessary may not be able to serve as an alternative to a pelvic belt, and vice versa.
Pros and Cons of Pessaries
Pessaries are usually made of silicone and come in different shapes, depending on the organs that need support. Sizes depend on the type of prolapse and the unique aspects of your anatomy, ranging from about 3 to 13 centimeters, or roughly 1 to 5 inches.
A pessary may be able to help you avoid surgery, however, there are a few cons to a pessary that you should consider. Pessaries are not able to be used by all woman and must be fitted by a doctor. It is recommended you wear it consistently for maximum effect. Pessaries must be taken out often for cleanings, which can only be done by your doctor. Another con of pessaries is the potential of odor, discomfort and even can lead to an infection if not handled and treated properly.
Pros and Cons of Pelvic Belts
A pelvic belt is meant to be worn outside the body. In some cases, it can double as a lower undergarment. Pelvic belts vary significantly in the type of support they are intended to provide. For example, pelvic belts for pregnancy and postpartum may provide most of their assistance around the hips and belly, not the pelvic floor. Unlike Pessaries, all women can wear pelvic belts and a doctor is not required.
The chief advantage of a pelvic belt is that it is non-invasive and doesn’t need to be worn all the time. On the other hand, a pelvic belt may not be enough to resolve prolapse symptoms. These belts are typically meant to be used in conjunction with pelvic floor therapy, lifestyle changes and other treatments.
Before choosing any of these devices, it’s important to talk to your doctor. In the case of pessaries, you usually need to have them prescribed and fitted by a medical professional. A pelvic belt is easier to purchase online. However, buying the wrong size or wearing a belt in the wrong way may not relieve symptoms, and it can restrict blood flow or cause other problems.
If you are noticing symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse such as incontinence or pain in the pelvic floor, you should seek medical attention first.
Comparison of Pessaries and Pelvic Belts | Pros and Cons
When you talk to your doctor about support for pelvic organ prolapse, you might hear about pessaries and pelvic belts. Understanding the differences can help you make an educated choice.
Comparison of FemiCushion to Other Prolapse Support Garments
There are many different types and styles of prolapse support underwear and prolapse floor support pants on the market today. With so many choices to pick from, it can get overwhelming and make it hard to choose the best one that works for you. FemiCushion is the only prolapse support device that uses a soft silicone cushion to provide direct support to the prolapsed organ. This patented design is effective and is one that no other brands can offer. The cushion forms to the shape of the body for the upmost comfort and allows it to provide full support from all angles. This is the reason why the cushion is so effective at keeping the prolapsed organ inside the body and relieving prolapse symptoms. The supporter included in each FemiCushion kit is consciously designed to fit many different body shapes and sizes. Each supporter has adjustable waist straps that can be loosened or tightened according to patient’s preference and body fluctuations.
Many women with pelvic organ prolapse also suffers from urinary incontinence as a symptom. This is not a problem when using FemiCushion, as the holder that secures the cushion to the supporter is designed to absorb any excess discharge or liquid. The holder is made up of a combination of different fabrics for the ability to be absorbent and remain dry on the surface for comfortable wear. In addition to cloth holders, disposable holders are also offered. They are created to work perfectly with FemiCushion and a must have for on the go women or those who experience heavy urine leakage.
Supervising Doctor of This Article
Koichi Nagao, MD PhD
Professor, Department of Urology, Toho University Faculty of Medicine
Director of Urinary tract reconstruction center, Toho University Omori Medical Center
Director of Reproduction Center, Toho University Omori Medical Center
Professor Nagao specializes in plastic surgery in the field of reproductive medicine. He completed eight years of plastic surgery training at Showa University before majoring in urology at Toho University. With his meticulous surgical techniques and careful examinations that combines urology and plastic surgery, Professor Nagao became a Board Certified Specialist with multiple associations including the Japanese Urological Association, the Japan Society for Reproductive Medicine, and the Japanese Society for Sexual Medicine.