A pessary is a removable, medical-grade silicone device that is inserted into the vagina to aid in the management of symptoms of two pelvic health conditions: pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. In the case of pelvic organ prolapse, the pessary helps to lift the descended organs and support them from below. In the case of stress urinary incontinence, the pessary places a small amount of pressure on the urethra (the tube that drains the bladder), helping to keep it closed and therefore minimize the chance of urinary leakage.
There are many different shapes and sizes of pessaries and often several must be trialed with your physiotherapist before the best fitting one can be determined. Depending on your symptoms, overall health, and treatment goals, the pessary may be left in for weeks or months, or removed daily. If it is left in for months, you will likely be recommended to see your doctor for removal, cleaning of the pessary, and re-insertion every few months. If you are to remove it daily, your physiotherapist will teach you how to remove, clean, and re-insert it on your own.
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