Vaginal wall prolapse – Is manually modifying a standard speculum the only option?

27.06.2017 Vaginal wall prolapse – Is manually modifying a standard speculum the only option?

Vaginal wall prolapse affects up to 30% of women who have had children, have high BMI, or chronic cough*. The condition, which causes the walls of the vagina to become weak and collapse inwards, can be extremely distressing and embarrassing for women, particularly when they require cervical screening, or even a colposcopy.

Reduced visibility

Vaginal wall prolapse, or anterior vaginal wall laxity, can reduce visibility and access to the cervix. A clear view of the cervix is important for cervical screening and colposcopies. Being able to visualise the cervix and any abnormalities, as well as being able to treat them is vital.

Manually “gloving” a speculum; a suitable option?

Historically, to repress the vaginal walls, clinicians attempt to modify an existing device by manually “gloving” the speculum with a latex glove or condom.

Manually “gloving” the speculum may initially appear to be a suitable option for cases of vaginal wall laxity, however such modifications may often take place during the clinic, unnecessarily consuming valuable procedural time.


Consideration of the glove’s specification (colour and material) is often overlooked. Besides, coloured surgical gloves restrict visibility of the vaginal walls. If not properly secured, it can roll back along the beak of the speculum, or even potentially expose the risk of leaving the glove (partial or complete) inside the patient.

Is the modification suitable for the intended purpose?

Many having to switch to a cheaper, non-latex glove.

In a broader sense, efficiency measures within the NHS continue to place even more pressure on every day consumables such as gloves, where many are having to switch to a cheaper, latex-free glove, widely regarded as inferior in terms of material flexibility; the result? Gloves are not intended to cover the beak of a speculum and have the potential to split or break.

Patient comfort

Considering the distressing and sensitive nature of vaginal wall prolapse, and the anxiety surrounding pelvic examinations, patient comfort and reassurance is often at the forefront of the clinician’s mind. The time taken to find a glove or condom and modify the speculum while the patient waits, may not be entirely reassuring, and should be taken into consideration.

A ‘Professional Solution’

Pelican Feminine Healthcare has developed a convenient and discreet solution for cases of vaginal wall prolapse.

Based on the market-leading PELIspec®, the ProWall® comes with a ready-applied, latex-free sheath to support the vaginal walls. When used with a water-based lubricant such as PELIjelly® the sheath becomes transparent, allowing the clinician to retain a 360° view of the vaginal walls, while still clearly being able to visualise the cervix.


Using a vaginal speculum with an attached sheath can improve visibility of the cervix by more than 20%

The ProWall® is the speculum of choice for nurses, colposcopists and doctors alike, with 87% of clinicians who trialled the ProWall® agreeing that it reduced the procedure time compared to modifying a standard vaginal speculum with a glove or condom.


What do our customers say?

The ProWall® is already loved by clinicians around the world and we regularly receive positive feedback. Here’s was our customers had to say about the ProWall®:

“The condom or cut-off glove finger does often not work. This is a great additional tool to have at our disposal.”Tayside Sexual & Reproductive Health Service

“It assisted and sped up what could have been a potentially challenging and uncomfortable smear for my patient.”Green Practice, Glasgow

“My patient had high BMI and I had difficulty locating her cervix in the past. The ProWall® held the vaginal walls very well and I was delighted at how easy it was to use.”Cervical Cancer Screening

For more information on PELIspec® ProWall® or for a free trial, please contact us.