Non-invasive biomechanical assessment of the prolapsed vaginal wall: an explorative pilot study on cutometry and indentometry

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The clinical assessment of pelvic organ prolapse (POP) and associated treatment strategies is currently limited to anatomical and subjective outcome measures, which have limited reproducibility and do not include functional properties of vaginal tissue. The objective of our study was to evaluate the feasibility of using cutometry and indentometry for non-invasive biomechanical assessment of the vaginal wall in women with POP. Both techniques were applied on the vaginal wall of 20 women indicated for surgical correction of POP stage two or higher. The primary outcome was the measurement success rate. Measurements were considered successful if biomechanical parameters were generated after a maximum of three attempts. Secondary outcomes included acquisition time, number of attempts to obtain a successful measurement, and biomechanical parameters. Measurements were successfully performed on the anterior vaginal wall of 12 women with cystocele and the posterior vaginal wall of eight women with rectocele. The success rate was 100% for both techniques and acquisition time was under 1 minute for all 20 measurements. Tissue fast elasticity of the posterior vaginal wall (rectocele) was significantly higher than that of the anterior vaginal wall (cystocele) and negatively correlated with age (r = − 0.57, P < 0.05). In women with POP, measuring the biomechanical properties of the vaginal wall using cutometry and indentometry is technically feasible. Objective evaluation of biomechanical properties may help to understand the pathophysiology behind surgical outcomes, providing an opportunity for the identification of patients at risk for (recurrent) prolapse, and individualized treatment decisions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2751
Pages (from-to)2751
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2023

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