The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness and safety of vaginal native tissue repair for symptomatic rectocele and to evaluate the impact on quality of life (QoL) and sexual function.Methods
One hundred fifty-one patients affected by rectocele stage II or higher according to the Pelvic Organ Prolapse Quantification System were enrolled. Patients underwent vaginal native tissue repair. Postoperative assessments consisted in a clinical examination and assessment of posterior compartment symptoms and defecatory dysfunctions. These were conducted 1, 12, and 60 months after surgery. Patients completed the Prolapse Quality-of-Life questionnaire, the Pelvic Floor Disability Index, the Pelvic Floor Impact Questionnaire, and the Pelvic Organ Prolapse/Urinary Incontinence Sexual Questionnaire short form.Results
The median follow-up was 64 (60–72) months. The median operative time was 55 (37–127) minutes, and the median postoperative hospital stay was 2 (2–4) days. No intraoperative complications occurred. At median follow-up, an objective cure rate of 88.2% was observed. Seventeen patients (11.3%) showed recurrent posterior vaginal descent stage II or higher. Defecatory dysfunctions, vaginal digitation, and vaginal bulge decreased significantly. The change of values of the Prolapse Quality-of-Life, Pelvic Floor Disability Index, and Pelvic Floor Impact Questionnaire questionnaires has shown a significant improvement in the QoL after surgery. The percentage of patients regularly practicing sexual activity increased, and dyspareunia decreased after treatment.Conclusions
Vaginal native tissue repair is a safe and effective procedure for symptomatic rectocele, with a low rate of complications, and improves pelvic organ prolapse–related symptoms, QoL, and sexual function.