A diagnosis of posterior vaginal prolapse generally occurs during a pelvic exam of your vagina and rectum.

During the pelvic exam your doctor is likely to ask you:

  • To bear down as if having a bowel movement. Bearing down may cause the posterior vaginal prolapse to bulge, so your doctor can assess its size and location.
  • To tighten your pelvic muscles as if you're stopping a stream of urine. This test checks the strength of your pelvic muscles.

You might fill out a questionnaire that helps your doctor assess how far the bulge extends into your vagina and how much it affects your quality of life. This information helps guide treatment decisions.

Rarely, your doctor might recommend imaging tests:

  • MRI or an X-ray can determine the size of the tissue bulge
  • Defecography can determine how efficiently your rectum empties