What is Rectal Prolapse?

Let’s start by giving you an overview of rectal prolapse, so you know exactly what I’m talking about.  Although, further down, I am also going to talk about rectocele – so if that’s your condition, then stay with me.

Rectal or colon prolapse occurs when the tissue that lines the rectum falls down into or sticks out of the anal opening. Rectal prolapse can start off protruding only during bowel movements; then it may protrude during sneezes or other abdominal contractions; then progress to protruding during activities like walking, and eventually reach chronic protrusion, where the rectum fails to retract at all.

Rectal prolapse can result from the following conditions:

• Constipation
• Cystic fibrosis, MS, paralysis
• Malnutrition and malabsorption (celiac disease as an example)
• Pinworms (enterobiasis)
• Prior injury to the anus or pelvic area
• Whipworm infection (trichuriasis)
• Anal intercourse – especially if long-term or aggressive
• Childbirth

If your rectum has prolapsed, you will likely see a pink or reddish-colored mass of tissue sticking out from the opening of the anus, especially after a bowel movement. The lining of the rectal tissue may be visible, and may bleed slightly.

Natural Treatment for Rectal Prolapse

Treating the underlying causes of rectal prolapse usually cures the problem. In otherwise healthy elderly patients who have repeated rectal prolapse, surgery is sometimes used to repair physical problems that make prolapse more likely to occur. Surgery is also often recommended for treating rectocele (outpouching of the rectum into the vagina).

However, the surgery can result in scar tissue and adhesions, which can narrow the rectal canal (anal stenosis) and interfere with the rectal and pelvic muscles relaxing during a bowel movement. These two problems can then cause difficulty having a bowel movement, or result in hemorrhoids or rectal or anal fissures (tears) from repeated straining.

If this has already happened to you, I have effective natural treatment protocols for all of these conditions. Just click on the symptom in the list below to look them up:

Anal Stenosis and Anal or Rectal Stricture
Anal or Rectal Fissures

To treat the underlying conditions that cause or continue rectal prolapse, we need to address a number of possible factors:

1. Painful Rectal Area

Following colon prolapse, you may experience pain in the muscles surrounding the rectum – the levator ani muscles. Applying a hot castor oil pack to these muscles can help to relax and soothe them. If you feel your muscles from your sitz bones (the “sitting bones” you can feel at the bottom of your bum when you sit on a bicycle or hard seat), working up both sides of your buttocks and across just under your sacrum (the flat, slightly rounded pad of bone at the base of your spine) – you are feeling the levator ani muscles – this is where you need to apply the castor oil.

The simplest way to do this is to apply cold-pressed castor oil with your fingers in a horseshoe shape from the base of your right sitz bone, up to your tailbone, across your sacrum and then down to the bottom of your left sitz bone.

Once you have massaged in the castor oil, apply heat. If you have an electric heater, turn it on and kneel in front of it in the “hemorrhoid position’” – down on your knees and elbows with your head down and your bum in the air – so the heat can warm the rectal muscles. Ideally, apply the heat for 20 to 30 minutes, but even 10 minutes will help.

2. Straining To Defecate or Improper Defecation Position

The western practice of sitting on the toilet prevents the rectum from straightening out and opening – making us much more prone to bowel prolapse, constipation, hemorrhoids and fissures! Squatting on the toilet is best, or using a squatting platform like the Squatty Potty, that fits around your toilet.

At the least, put your feet on a child’s stepping stool when sitting on the toilet, to raise your knees higher than your hips. In addition to the video below, watch my videos on Constipation Pooping Positions and Self-Administered Colonic Massage.

Constipation can play a major role in rectal prolapse and ongoing aggravation. Straining or hard stools can tear your rectum (causing rectal fissures) and strain your pelvic muscles. If you suffer from chronic constipation, then I strongly advise you to get my book, Listen To Your Colon: The Complete Natural Healing Guide For Constipation, as you need a comprehensive constipation treatment that addresses all of the variables.

But if your constipation is only mild, or occasional, then this natural constipation treatment protocol may be enough to treat it successfully:

• An easy constipation remedy is to take 250 mg of magnesium citrate and 100 mg of potassium citrate together after a good breakfast, lunch or dinner. These two minerals act as a muscle relaxant for the anal sphincter muscle to facilitate easier bowel movements, while simultaneously stimulating your intestinal peristalsis (wave-length muscle contractions) to produce a bowel movement.
• Also take 7 to 10 billion CFU (colony forming units) of Natren brand probiotics per day to begin the process of normalizing your bowel flora (1 capsule of Healthy Trinity per day).
• You also need to use a stool softener/bulking agent, like pysllium, flax, chia, or MetaCleanse once or twice a day to keep your stool soft and reduce stress and pressure on the rectum.  I used to recommend MetaCleanse but the manufacturer has stopped producing it so, in its place, you can use 1 tbsp. sprouted flax and chia powder (available locally and online at various sites; you may have to purchase the two powders separately) along with 1/2 tsp. bentonite clay. NOTE: You cannot use these remedies if you are on an exclusively elemental diet – only if you are combining Absorb Plus with regular foods.
• Remember to drink 8 to 10 glasses of filtered or spring water per day.

3. Weakened, Stretched or Traumatized Pelvic Muscles and Rectocele

If you apply gentle pressure to the muscles closest to the area where your rectum protrudes when you’re having a bowel movement, you may be able to hold the rectum inside and avoid it coming out with the stool.

Also, childbirth or prolonged constipation with hard straining can result in a condition known as Rectocele – where the walls between the vagina and rectum are thinned and/or stretched out. So in that case, your rectum can outpouch into your vagina, thus preventing the straight passage of stool. This video will give you some great techniques to use with either of these conditions:

Squatting on the toilet, or using a squatting platform like the Squatty Potty, is the ideal way to easily reach your perineum (the area between the rectum and vagina in women, and between the rectum and scrotum in men) and the rectal muscles (levator ani) located on either side of your rectum and around in a horseshoe shape up to your coccyx (the end of your tailbone).

NOTE: Do not squat directly on the toilet unless you have a very solid, porcelain toilet that you know can support your body weight. Check with your toilet manufacturer for it’s weight bearing capacity to be sure.

Keep a box of surgical gloves (available at any pharmacy) in your bathroom so that you can get intimate with your rectal muscles and perineum without worrying about getting poo on your hands.

Bodywork Therapy

The anorectal canal is girdled by muscles and ligaments, with the pudendal nerve running throughout these muscles. Following surgery, childbirth, or any kind of trauma or continual strain, you can develop muscle, tendon or ligament strains in corresponding tissues or organs. This strain and weakening of the muscles and ligaments can lead to rectal prolapse.

The other thing that will greatly help you to heal the underlying cause of your prolapse is bodywork therapy from a practitioner who is specifically trained to work with this area. Be sure to tell them you suffer from rectal prolapse and ask them to specifically look at the levator ani muscles, sacrum, coccyx and pudendal nerve.

You will likely get the best results from an osteopathic doctor or physical therapist that is trained in myofascial release techniques. Look for chiropractors, osteopaths or physical therapists (called physiotherapists in Canada) trained in A.R.T. (Active Release Technique) or in John F. Barnes myofascial release and myofascial unwinding techniques.


• Apply cold-pressed castor oil and heat
• Take 250 mg of magnesium citrate and 100 mg of potassium citrate together
• Take 7 to 10 billion CFU of Natren brand probiotics
• Use a stool softener like pysllium, flax, chia, or the flax/chia seed powder + bentonite combo
• Drink 8 to 10 glasses of filtered or spring water per day
• Toilet squatting or using a squatting stool instead of the normal way of sitting on the toilet
• Apply pressure to the area surrounding your rectum during a bowel movement
• Self administer a colonic massage
• See a bodywork therapist

Fill in the form below and I will send you my free ebook, Jini’s Healing Guide For Rectal Prolapse, with in-depth instructions for all these natural remedies for rectal prolapse:


Original post May 2012. Most recently updated June 2019.