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The Pelvic Floor

The pelvic floor is a complex trampoline-like structure made up of muscle and ligaments. It acts like a scaffolding for the anus, rectum, bladder and vagina. Specialised parts of the pelvic floor act as sphincters (gatekeepers) helping to maintain anal and urinary continence. Part of the pelvic floor forms a sling around the anorectal junction (where the rectum joins the anus) and helps to preserve anal function and facilitate defaecation by altering the angle between the anus and rectum at the appropriate time.

Pelvic floor, pelvic organ prolapse, laparosopic rectopexy


Pelvic floor problems can be addressed by surgery either from below (perineal approach) or through the abdomen by keyhole (laparoscopic) surgery. The most widely used procedure is Laparoscopic Ventral Rectopexy where synthetic mesh or a porcine biologic implant is used to hitch up the rectum and vagina. Perineal procedures include STARR (Stapled Transanal Resection of Rectum), Delormes operation and transanal rectocele repair.

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