TOP VIEW

Coccyx

Pelvis

Pubic

Anus

Muscles of

bone

the pelvic

Vagina

floor

Urethra

SIDE VIEW

Colon

Coccyx

Uterus

Pubic

bone

Bladder

Pelvic

muscles

Anus

Vagina

Urethra

Normal anatomy

Pelvic muscles act as a sling to support the

organs above and squeeze the openings

through which the rectum, vagina and ure

-

thra pass. In men, where there is no vagina,

there is no opening in the pelvic floor prone

to prolapse in later life.

Front wall of vagina

Prolapse of the bladder

When the muscles are damaged, the bladder

and front wall of the vagina can prolapse out

through the opening in the pelvic floor.

Back wall of vagina

Prolapse of the rectum

Similarly, the rectum and back wall of the

vagina can prolapse out through the vagina

opening.

Uterus

Vagina

Prolapse of the uterus

If the ligaments that hold the uterus in place

fail, the uterus can fall along with the vagina,

bladder, and rectum.

TOP VIEW

Coccyx

Pelvis

Pubic

Anus

Muscles of the

bone

pelvic floor

Vagina

Urethra

SIDE VIEW

Colon

Coccyx

Uterus

Pubic

bone

Bladder

Pelvic

muscles

Anus

Vagina

Urethra

Front wall of vagina

Normal anatomy

Prolapse of the bladder

When the muscles are damaged, the bladder

Pelvic muscles act as a sling to support the

and front wall of the vagina can prolapse out

organs above and squeeze the openings

through the opening in the pelvic floor.

through which the rectum, vagina and ure

-

thra pass. In men, where there is no vagina,

there is no opening in the pelvic floor prone

to prolapse in later life.

Uterus

Back wall of vagina

Vagina

Prolapse of the uterus

Prolapse of the rectum

If the ligaments that hold the uterus in place

Similarly, the rectum and back wall of the

fail, the uterus can fall along with the vagina,

vagina can prolapse out through the vagina

bladder and rectum.

opening.

Normal anatomy

Pelvic muscles act as a sling to support the

organs above and squeeze the openings

TOP VIEW

through which the rectum, vagina and ure

-

thra pass. In men, there is no opening in

the pelvic floor that is prone to prolapse

in later life.

SIDE VIEW

Colon

Coccyx

Uterus

Pubic

bone

Bladder

Pelvic

Pelvis

Pubic

Anus

Muscles

Coccyx

muscles

bone

Vagina

of the

Urethra

pelvic

Anus

floor

Vagina

Urethra

Uterus

Front wall of vagina

Back wall of vagina

Vagina

Prolapse of the uterus

Prolapse of the bladder

Prolapse of the rectum

If the ligaments that hold the uterus in place

Similarly, the rectum and back wall of the

When the muscles are damaged, the bladder

fail, the uterus can fall along with the vagina,

vagina can prolapse out through the vagina

and front wall of the vagina can prolapse out

bladder and rectum.

opening.

through the opening in the pelvic floor.

SOURCE: John O.L. DeLancey, University of Michigan Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. GRAPHIC: Patterson Clark - The Washington Post. Published Dec. 22, 2015.