Introduction and hypothesis: To identify practice variation in management of patients with a vaginal pessary for pelvic organ prolapse (POP). Methods: A nationwide survey was sent to all Dutch gynecologists with a special interest in urogynecology. Results: The response rate was 59 %. Of the respondents, 13 % had a written protocol for pessary treatment in their department. Pessary treatment was proposed by 69 % of respondents as a treatment option. Counseling about side effects varied. All respondents provided information concerning the possibility of serious vaginal discharge. Concerning this side effect, 15 % of the respondents stated that it occurs in 5 – 20 % of patients, 27 % that it occurs in 20 – 40 % of patients, and 57 % that it occurs in more than 40 % of patients. Another item concerned counseling for the likelihood of vaginal blood loss. All respondents provided information concerning the possibility of vaginal blood loss. Concerning this side effect, 53 % of the respondents stated that it occurs in 5 – 20 % of patients, 33 % that it occurs in 20 – 40 %, and 14 % that it occurs in more than 40 % of patients. Follow-up after initial placement was done by 69 % of the respondents at 2 – 6 weeks, by 2 % at 8 weeks, and by 29 % at 12 weeks or more. Most (98 %) of the respondents extended the interval between visits when the patient had no complaints, and 96 % of the respondents reported that they routinely instruct patients about self-management. Conclusions: Pessaries are suggested as a treatment option by a majority of gynecologists, but practice varies widely. We consider that the variation in practice is due to a lack of available protocols and lack of evidence.

Pessary, Prolapse, Prolapse management, Survey
dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00192-015-2697-6, hdl.handle.net/1765/85994
International Urogynecology Journal: and pelvic floor dysfunction

Velzel, J, Roovers, J.P, Van der Vaart, C.H, Broekman, B.M.W, Vollebregt, A, & Hakvoort, R. (2015). A nationwide survey concerning practices in pessary use for pelvic organ prolapse in The Netherlands: identifying needs for further research. International Urogynecology Journal: and pelvic floor dysfunction, 26(10), 1453–1458. doi:10.1007/s00192-015-2697-6