Symptoms and Signs of Prolapsed Bladder

Medical Author:
Medically Reviewed on 7/29/2022

Doctor's Notes on Prolapsed Bladder

A prolapsed bladder is medically known as a cystocele. It occurs due to the weakening of the tissues between a woman's bladder and her vagina, allowing the bladder to droop into the vagina. A cystocele can be mild or severe and may be caused by:

  • muscle straining while giving birth,
  • heavy lifting, or 
  • repeated straining during bowel movements,

Signs and symptoms of a prolapsed bladder include:

  • leakage of urine and 
  • an inability to completely empty the bladder. 

Other associated symptoms may include:

  • a feeling of fullness or pressure in the pelvis, 
  • lower back pain
  • urgent need to urinate, 
  • pain during sexual intercourse, and 
  • a bulge in the vagina that can be felt or seen.

What Is the Treatment for Prolapsed Bladder?

Treatment for a prolapsed bladder depends on the severity of the condition. 

  • Mild cases may not require specific treatment other than avoiding heavy lifting or straining. 
  • Nonsurgical treatments for prolapsed bladder include estrogen therapy to strengthen the walls of the vagina or a pessary, which is a small object inserted into the vagina to hold the bladder in place. 
  • For more serious cases, there are various surgical procedures designed to treat prolapsed bladder.


Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.