Adult Pelvic Floor
The Pelvic Floor – What is it?
The Pelvic Floor is the multi-layered sling of muscles within the pelvis that has many important functions:
- Support for bowel/bladder and reproductive organs/abdominal organs
- Bowel and bladder sphincteric control for continence
- Sexual function and appreciation
- Assists to support the bony pelvis, elimination, and circulation/lymphatic drainage
The pelvic floor is a complicated area of the body that can be affected by many conditions or related factors (shown below). The affects may cause muscles and connective tissue to weaken or become injured. Organ dysfunction such as Interstitial Cystitis or Prostatitis, and hormonal changes can also affect pelvic floor muscle function.
- Cancer Treatment
- Chronic Constipation/Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Hysterectomy/Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery
- Inguinal/Abdominal Hernias
- Interstitial Cystitis
- Prolapse – Cyctocele, Rectocele, Enterocele
Pudendal Nerve Injury, Entrapment or Neuopathy
- Rectal Pain
- Sexual Abuse/Rape
- Sexual/Pelvic Pain
- Urinary/Fecal Incontinence
Affects on Quality of Life
Pelvic Floor dysfunction often contributes to a variety of quality of life issues. In addition to effecting daily bladder and bowel functions, it may also impact one’s self-esteem and intimacy, and be so debilitating and painful, that it limits one’s activities. If you have a child suffering from pelvic floor dysfunction, visit the Pediatric Pelvic Floor Rehabilitation page for information on how to improve their quality of life.
Physical Therapy – A Non-Invasive Alternative
Treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction does not always require surgery, medications or invasive medical treatment. Physical therapy is an effective treatment option for managing and overcoming pelvic floor conditions. As a non-invasive treatment approach, physical therapy uses a variety of manual techniques and therapeutic modalities to limit discomfort and increase the client’s role in their treatment.
What to Expect During Your First Visit
First and foremost, you can expect to be treated as a person rather than simply a condition. Each procedure will be performed with your consent, respecting your personal level of comfort.
Julie’s initial evaluation consists of a thorough review of your medical history, subjective evaluation of symptoms, special tests and any current or past treatment for the condition. The physical examination will include a postural screen and musculoskeletal assessment paying close attention to the spine, pelvis, abdomen and hips. You might also receive a pelvic floor muscle and tissue exam to determine which structures may be painful or contributing to the condition.
"Since my hysterectomy 30 years ago, I had been plagued with chronic pelvic pain due to scar tissue. 15 years ago, I tried surgery to have the scar tissue removed, however, my pain relief was short-lived. Then in 2008, Julie was recommended to me, and after a series of treatments, I am today happily pain-free. I felt comfortable throughout the whole process. Julie is a caring and sensitive person who I would recommend to anyone suffering needlessly from pelvic pain." ~ Linda H.