The doctor will ask about your medical history, symptoms and past surgeries, if any. The doctor will also conduct a physical examination and may ask you to squat, strain or to mimic bowel movement. The doctor will insert a gloved finger into the anus to check the strength of the rectum and anal sphincter. He may ask you to get a colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy or anal ultrasound to check for ulcers, polyps or tumors.
There are two surgical procedures to treat rectal prolapse:
- Abdominal Repair through Open Surgery: In this approach, the doctor makes an incision in the abdominal area. It is usually performed under general anesthesia. The doctor places the rectum back in place. The surgeon may also remove a part of the colon in case of patients with chronic constipation.
- Laparoscopic rectopexy: This is another approach to treat rectal prolapse where the rectum is restored to its original position in the pelvis. It no longer protrudes into the anal region. The doctor makes small incisions in the abdomen and inserts a laparoscope. A laparoscope has a camera attached on top of it that will project the images of the internal structure on the monitor. The surgeon locates the sigmoid in the colon and rectum. The rectum is freed from its surroundings and lifted gently to its position. In some cases the doctor may remove a part of rectum, which he will discuss before the surgery itself. A mesh may or may not be placed to strengthen the area, depending on the condition. Finally, the incisions are closed with adhesive glue.