The purpose of this study was to determine the interobserver and intraobserver reliability of the clinical examination of anterior vaginal wall support defects.Study design
Sixty-three patients with at least stage II anterior vaginal wall prolapse were prospectively evaluated with a standardized examination to detect anterior vaginal wall support defects. Interobserver reliability was assessed with a duplicate examination performed by a blinded second examiner. Intraobserver reliability was assessed with a second examination performed at least 3 weeks later by 1 of the original 2 examiners. Examination reliability for the 4 types of defects (central, right lateral, left lateral, and superior) was evaluated with the kappa statistic.Results
The inter- and intraexaminer reliability of the clinical examination for central, superior, and right and left paravaginal defects was poor; all kappas were less than 0.50. Overall interexaminer agreement was 42% with a kappa of 0.16 (95% CI, 0–0.32). Overall intraexaminer agreement was 46% with a kappa of 0.16 (95% CI, 0–0.45). Reliability was noted to improve with increasing stage of prolapse.Conclusion
The clinical examination of anterior vaginal wall support defects displays poor interexaminer and intraexaminer agreement.