Pelvic Pain Physiotherapy

Pain in the lower abdomen, hips, pelvis or perineum are collectively called pelvic pain.

Pain in the pelvis, aka pelvic pain, is complex and can have many possible causes. To make things worse, it affects up to 20% of the population in the United States of America (that’s 1 in 5 individuals!), including both men and women.

Pelvic pain is called chronic pain when it affects the patient for more than 3 months without subsiding or resolving.

What’s pelvic pain?

Pain in the pelvis can be caused by either one or combination of:

  1. Pregnancy and childbirth, which can affect pelvic muscles and cause changes to pelvic joints
  2. Pressure on one or more of the pelvic nerves
  3. Pelvic diseases
  4. Pelvic joint non-pregnancy/children-related issues, such as direct injuries or disease
  5. Muscles of the pelvis, lower back or groin areas
  6. Muscle weakness or imbalance within the muscles of the pelvic floor, trunk, or pelvis
  7. Changes in the muscles that control the bowel and bladder
  8. Weakness in the muscles of the pelvis and pelvic floor
  9. Scar tissue after abdominal or pelvic surgery
  10. Prolapse of any of the pelvic organs

What does pelvic pain feel like?

Pelvic pain is very subjective and will be different for different patients. Some experience it as an ache, some experience as sharp pain, some feel tingling, some feel numbness — all in varying intensity, duration, location and triggers.

To add to that, patients may experience:

  • hip pain
  • butt / buttock pain
  • tailbone pain
  • pubic bone pain
  • pelvic joint pain
  • tenderness in muscles of the lower back, buttock, pelvis or abdomen
  • sense of discomfort or heaviness as if you’re sitting on something hard

Signs and symptoms

  • difficulty sitting down for periods of time
  • difficulty moving the hip or lower back
  • difficulty moving about or doing daily activities
  • difficulty or pain during sexual activities
  • pain or numbness in pelvic regions
  • incontinence or urgent urination or pain during urination
  • constipation or pain during passing motion
  • difficulty using tampines
  • difficulty with balance in standing, walking or moving about

How to diagnose pelvic pain?

The physiotherapists will do a thorough assessment of your

  • medical history
  • pelvis and its muscles and joints
  • movements that may trigger the pelvic pain

The exam may include:

  • Pelvic girdle screening
  • Soft tissue assessment
  • Visual inspection of the tissues
  • Reflex testing
  • Sensation testing
  • Internal assessment of pelvic floor muscles

The physios will also determine if you should be referred to a gynae or doctor to assess for other medical issues.

How physiotherapy can help

After assessing your pelvis and movement, the physio will co-create a treatment program with you, which may include::

  • training how to activate, strengthen and incorporate the appropriate pelvic muscles to use
  • teach your appropriate pelvic floor muscle exercises
  • train you in core muscle strengthening including use of clinical pilates
  • teach you how to strengthen the affected muscles and use them regularly

Where To Next?

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *