Pelvic organ prolapse and sexual function

Dietz, Viviane and Maher, Christopher (2013) Pelvic organ prolapse and sexual function. International Urogynecology Journal, 24 11: 1853-1857. doi:10.1007/s00192-013-2176-x

Author Dietz, Viviane
Maher, Christopher
Title Pelvic organ prolapse and sexual function
Journal name International Urogynecology Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0937-3462
Publication date 2013-11
Year available 2013
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1007/s00192-013-2176-x
Open Access Status
Volume 24
Issue 11
Start page 1853
End page 1857
Total pages 5
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Springer
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Introduction and hypothesis
The aim was to review the impact of pelvic organ prolapse surgery on sexual function.


Every 4 years and as part of the Fifth International Collaboration on Incontinence we reviewed the English-language scientific literature after searching PubMed, Medline, Cochrane library and Cochrane database of systematic reviews, published up to January 2012. Publications were classified as level 1 evidence (randomised controlled trials [RCT] systematic reviews), level 2 (poor quality RCT, prospective cohort studies), level 3 (case series or retrospective studies) and level 4 (case reports). The highest level of evidence was utilised by the committee to make evidence based recommendations based upon the Oxford grading system. Grade A recommendation usually depends on consistent level 1 evidence. Grade B recommendation usually depends on consistent level 2 and/or 3 studies, or “majority evidence” from RCTs. Grade C recommendation usually depends on level 4 studies or “majority evidence” from level 2/3 studies or Delphi process expert opinion. Grade D “no recommendation possible” would be used where the evidence is inadequate or conflicting and when expert opinion is delivered without formal analytical process, such as by Delphi.


With regard to the anterior compartment, the use of mesh is associated with neither a worsening in sexual function nor an increase in de novo dyspareunia compared with traditional anterior colporrhaphy (grade B). There is insufficient information to provide evidence-based recommendations on sexual function after vaginal mesh in the posterior compartment or after new lightweight or absorbable meshes (grade D).


There is a paucity of data on the impact of prolapse surgery on sexual function. Sexual function and dyspareunia rates are similar after anterior polypropylene mesh and anterior colporrhaphy (grade B). We recommend using validated questionnaires measuring sexual function in women before and after prolapse surgery and reporting sexual activity and dyspareunia rates pre- and post-intervention in all patients.
Keyword Dyspareunia
Transvaginal mesh
Sexual function
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 6 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 8 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 10 Nov 2013, 00:05:09 EST by System User on behalf of Obstetrics & Gynaecology - RBWH