UTERUS, PROLAPSE OF
UVULA
the menopause, it is usually a blood-
stained vaginal discharge. Diagnosis is
made by
hysteroscopy
or
biopsy.
Very early endometrial cancer is usu-
ally treated by
hysterectomy
and removal
of the fallopian tubes and ovaries. If the
cancer has spread,
radiotherapy
and
anti-
cancer drug
treatment may also be used,
uterus, prolapse of A condition in which
the
uterus
descends from its normal
position into the
vagina.
The degree of
prolapse varies from 1
st-degree prolapse,
in which there is only slight displacement
of the uterus, to 3rd-degree prolapse
(procidentia), in which the uterus can be
seen outside the
vulva.
Stretching of the ligaments supporting
the uterus (during
childbirth,
for exam-
ple) is the most common cause. Prolapse
is aggravated by obesity.
There are often no symptoms, but
sometimes there is a dragging feeling
in the pelvis. Diagnosis is made by
physical examination.
Pelvic floor exercises
strengthen the
muscles of the vagina and thus reduce
the risk of a prolapse, especially follow-
ing childbirth. Treatment usually involves
surgery (
hysterectomy
). Rarely, if surgery
is not wanted or is not recommended, a
plastic ring-shaped pessary may be
inserted into the vagina to hold the
uterus in position. (See also
cystocele
;
rectocele; urethrocele.)
uterus, retroverted A normal variation
in which the uterus inclines backwards
rather than forwards. A retroverted uterus
rarely causes problems unless it is com-
bined with a
pelvic infection.
uvea Part of the
eye,
comprising the
iris,
the
ciliary body
and its muscle that
focuses the
lens,
and the
choroid.
uveitis Inflammation of the
uvea,
which
may seriously affect vision. Uveitis may
affect any part of the uvea, including the
iris
(when it is called iritis), the
0
(when
it is known as cyclitis), or the
choroid
(when it is called choroiditis). The most
common cause is an
autoimmune disor-
der.
Other causes include infections
such as
tuberculosis
and
syphilis.
Treat-
ment is with
corticosteroid drugs
and
eye-drops containing an
atropine-
relat-
ed substance.
The
inflammation
is
monitored with a
slit-lamp.
Various
other drugs may be prescribed if the
cause is an infection,
uvula The small, fleshy protuberance
that hangs from the middle of the lower
edge of the soft
palate.
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