Ann Coloproctol.  2021 Oct;37(5):291-297. 10.3393/ac.2020.01095.0156.

Three-Dimensional Pelvic Floor Ultrasound Assessment of Pelvic Organ Prolapse: Minimal Levator Hiatus and Levator Ani Deficiency Score

  • 1Department of Surgery, Seoul Songdo Hospital, Seoul, Korea


The purpose of this study was to determine whether levator ani deficiency (LAD) scores and minimal levator hiatus (MLH) areas affect Pelvic Organ Prolapse Quantification (POP-Q) stage.
This study was a retrospective chart review of patients with pelvic organ prolapse (POP) at Seoul Songdo Hospital between August 2019 and August 2020. Three-dimensional (3D) pelvic floor ultrasound, preoperative anal manometry, and other physiological tests were performed in 78 patients with POP symptoms. We divided the patients into mild prolapse and severe prolapse groups based on the POP-Q. We examined the LAD and MLH areas. LAD scores were categorized as mild, moderate, or severe.
There were 32 patients (41.0%) in the mild prolapse group (POP-Q stage I and II) and 46 (59.0%) in the severe prolapse group (POP-Q stage III and IV). The mean LAD score was significantly higher in severe prolapse group (13.33±2.49 vs. 8.19±2.92, P<0.001), and the rate of severe deficiency was also significantly higher in the severe prolapse group (29 [63.0%] vs. 2 [6.3%], P<0.001). The mean MLH was also significantly larger in the severe prolapse group (17.91±2.74 cm2 vs. 14.95±2.60 cm2, P<0.001). In addition, both MLH and LAD scores tended to increase at each stage.
There is a strong positive correlation between the POP-Q stage and the MLH and LAD scores that can be seen on 3D pelvic floor ultrasound. The findings of this study, by objectively demonstrating LAD and MLH in women with POP, are an important contribution to POP.


Pelvic organ prolapse; Pelvic floor; Ultrasonography; Minimal levator hiatus; Levator ani deficiency score
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