Follow-up on Pessary


My first introductory message on Mon evening apparently got lost... sigh. I wasn't aware that changes were being made to the system at that time or I wouldn't have posted then. I did manage to read one response from Flora, thank you! At least I know the system works, partially.

I saw my gynecologist today & took your suggestion Flora & made copies of the Milex pessary products from their web site & took them with me. She looked at it briefly but didn't seem too interested. She fitted me with another one, same shape but one size larger. This was a size 4, last one was size 3 (the ring I had used in the first place was size 6). The name of the pessary that I am trying is the Hodge pessary. It is not a Milex product as far as I know. When I asked her if the manufacturing companies used the same sizing system she said she didn't know. Does anybody know?

She asked me how many days I had been able to keep the last one in. I told her it wasn't a matter of days, it was no more than a couple hrs. She said the Gellhorn pessary is the most effective but that you cannot be sexually active when you are using it. I told her I never use a pessary at night. They always fall out during the day after a few hrs & I never put them in at night as I don't have a prolapse problem when I'm laying down. If I could find one that does stay in for a full day or more she thought that taking them in & out would increase my risk of bacteria & infection getting in there. Besides she said the Gellhorn is hard to get out & she thought a doctor would probably have to do it. Frankly, I'd like to try a pessary that is in so good it is hard to come out. Everything I've tried falls out in a couple hrs. Has anyone here tried the Gellhorn? Was it helpful?

Hope to hear back from some of you this time. Very sorry that I missed all of your responses except Flora's from my first post.

Joy Mom

Hi Joy Mom,
The first pessary I was fitted for was a Gellhorn. It worked quite well but eventually started to fall out. It seems to work on a suction principal and your doctor is right it is very hard to take out and can be frustrating. I think it is called a Gellhorn because it has a knob on it.
If you look on the Milex website again you will see pictures of the Gellhorn and the Hodge pessaries.
Some of the women on this web site use the sea sponge to hold everything in place and are very satified with the results.
You should download the posture information from the Home page and try it. Using it might help to keep your pessary in place.
Take care.


Hi again and welcome Joy Mom,

So sorry for the inconvenience. I did write you a long-winded response, but I guess I'll just follow Flora's message by saying that at least two of our members dealing with universal prolapses - Holly and Sybille - believed pessaries made their rectocele worse. Remember that the upper vagina is supposed to lay as flat as possible. It would be nice if you found a pessary that worked for you, but just pay close attention to how and if it is affecting your overall condition. Yes, for just a few dollars, give the sea sponge a try!

Wishing you well,


Hi There, I went to gyno today to talk more about pessary. He looked at the literature from the Milex C. Briefly and didn't even turn to all the pages I'd brought him. I am holding off on pessaries for now, because the sea sponges keep getting better and better for me. Oh yes, he said I had more than a 2nd degree prolapse, but six weeks ago, before he knew I would reject the surgery, it was 3rd degree. I would like to write more but dinner is almost done. Later, Nancy

Thanks for your responses--I would like to try the sea sponges. Where do you get them? Maybe it is posted somewhere on this site that I have missed. Any suggestions on how to optimize their use?

The messages that I have read on this site of women who have had hysterectomies & now experience cystoceles & rectoceles is so helps to know that working with what I have is worth it.

I would like to hear more about this sea spone and where to get one? If it is removeable for sex etc and does it fall out with BM etc? Thanks

Hi, I have been using them for several months now. They are like a tampon and this is what they were designed for! To help the environment deal with too many in the landfills! 2 of them cost me $7 and other than losing one in the toilet in the first week of trial, I am still on my 3rd after 4 months. is where I got mine. And if I may ask, did you have to pay for all those pessaries that didn't work?
The site will talk to you about how to use, but wet and squeeze out water to insert. Don't use soap on them! Soak about every three days in peroxide, and never leave them in overnight. This is easy to do as they are so comfortable, you'll almost forget they are in. Nancy

And they ease a prolapse like a pessary ring would? Also - I am in UK - do you know where i would get this peroxide stuff? Thanks :-)

Hmmmmmmm it wont let me edit a post...

Could someone give me a link of where to get this book (Hopes its in UK) as I have looked and cannot find it - Thanks

You could probably get peroxide at a chemist's shop. (We call them drug stores.) Peroxide is a mild antiseptic.
If the book you are referring to is Christine's book "Saving the Whole Woman", you can order it from If you can't get on with that link go to and click on internatioal links.
I had to get a new copy as I loaned mine to a friend and her pup destroyed it. I got my new copy from
What part of the UK are you from? My mother was born in Sheffield.
Best wishes.

Like Christine said, I am convinced that the pessary contributed to my rectocele. It was a ring one and the first one they gave me was too large and actually blocked my bowel. The doctor was surprised when I came back the next day complaining. He said it normally takes people a couple of weeks before they come back.

The second one was smaller, but I lasted less than a day with it too. It was just as uncomfortable and I didn't like compromising those tissues by taking it in and out, and I couldn't stand it all day long.

Because of that, I have the rectocele in addition to the prolapse and cystocele. I didn't have it before. I do like the sea sponges and I still use them on occasion, but the posture alone and the exercises from the video are pretty much all I do now. I do Maya Massage at night before sleep and I believe that helps as well.

Some days are better than others in that some days I really notice my prolapes and other days I don't, but the posture works. If you truly do like the pessary, great, but do look at the sponges as well. And keep up with the posture and exercises.


I have found the book on Amazon - Thankssssssssssssssss

I am in Kent and I am so excited to be able to try and heal this naturally without surgery i am in tears yet again - lolol

Thanks so muchhhhhhhhh

Holly, I am not too familiar with the Maya massage! Is this where you rub gently on the tummy in the upwards position? Anymore to it than that? Thanks, Nancy

Nancy - try the SEARCH function and see what you can pull up on MM. We've talked a lot about it. :-)

where is the search button?

At the beginning of each forum there is a banner across the top of the page with four options. One of them is SEARCH. :-)

You did just fine, Mary Kay...:-)

I used the donut pessary for one year. Gyn put it in and left it there and it stayed just fine. But, it felt like "you know what" having it put in. It didn't feel good coming out either. But, for that year it was great. However, close to the end it began to stink. That is why I had it out. I didn't have a good feeling about leaving something in there that long - but, the gyn said it was okay unless I had problems.

Hi Mary Kay,

I too have a cystocele and slight rectocele. I have found it much easier to urinate in a semi squatting position rather than completely seated. I was also very suspectible to UTI's, getting them at least on a monthly basis, often two times a month. I have since figured out that this was because of the excess urine being left in the bladder. As per Christine's great illustration and great information in the book. It makes so much sense to me now. I wanted to tell you though that as soon as you feel an infection coming on, take the D-Mannose -- it truly works like a charm! Also, if you can try and eek out all the urine by whatever position works for you, you won't be setting yourself up for an infection to brew. I am so thankful to Christine for this wonderful site and forum where we can all share and learn from one another, avoiding the surgeries that so often fail. Be well, April

That's great news, Marykay. Please take your time with the postural work - you have all the time in the world - and rest as much as you can. Glad to hear of the diet changes and I think now you will be better able the interpret what your doctor has to say tomorrow.

Dear Marykay,

It is time the dogma expressed not only by your doctor but by the medical system in general about prolapse be reconsidered. It is true that many of us with severe prolapse have not reversed our conditions, yet, what exactly does it mean to

Thank you, Marykay, for your lovely words of inspiration. Yes, you are right that a covering of tough, stretchy fascial tissue surrounds all our pelvic organs. In addition, there is an even tougher

The more information you can gather on your condition the better, including the trip to the urogyn. Just understand that he/she has a very specific and narrow viewpoint on the matter and will give you a predictable set of answers regarding both prolapse progression and treatment options. You probably need to make some decisions regarding just what you are willing to live with and what you are willing to risk vis-a-vis surgery. Of course you need to get the uti

Hi Joan,
I am shocked that your gyn left your pessary in for a year without having you come back to check it and clean it.
I have used a pessary since 2001. My gyn has me go in for checkups every 3 to 6 months and also checks to make sure it isn't causing any problems. I also take it out and clean it myself and re insert it quite often.
Best wishes.

Hi Flora,

I tend to agree with you. That is probably why the darn
thing "stunk". I think it depends on which type of pessary is used as to how it is dealt with. Fortunately I had no problms at all. I forgot that I had it. However, somehow I am glad it is out.

Best Wishes,