At Archway Health and Sports Services we have a number of special interests, including physiotherapy management of pelvic health disorders. This area of physiotherapy involves the management of conditions related to pelvic floor muscle dysfunction. These muscles lie at the base of your pelvis, between the pubic bone and tailbone and are responsible for bowel and bladder control, as well as sexual function. Pelvic floor dysfunction can contribute to incontinence, difficulties emptying the bladder and bowel, pelvic organ prolapse, chronic pelvic pain, sexual pain, and pregnancy related pain.
Symptoms that may related to pelvic floor muscle dysfunction include:
A physiotherapist trained to evaluate the pelvic floor can provide assessment and treatment of the following conditions:
Stress or Urge Incontinence
Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Over Active Bladder
Pregnancy Related Pain (Pre and Post Partum)
Pudendal Neuralgia or Entrapment
Physiotherapy is internationally recognized as the first choice of treatment for incontinence and prolapse. Your therapist will use evidence-based techniques that are more cost-effective and less invasive than other options such as surgery. Research shows that physiotherapy is highly effective at improving and resolving these conditions.
In 2010, the Cochrane Collaboration published a review that analyzed the effectiveness of pelvic floor strengthening in stress and urge incontinence. Based on the findings, it was recommended that pelvic floor strengthening be taught by a physiotherapist using internal assessment and treatment techniques and pelvic floor physiotherapy should be the first line of defense for urge and stress incontinence (before surgery is considered).
Unfortunately, when women initially talk to their doctor about urinary incontinence, they are often simply told to “do Kegels.” The problem with this prescription is that research shows that without instruction on how to perform pelvic floor muscle strengthening by a professional using internal techniques, many women will perform the exercise incorrectly, some in a manner that could actually promote incontinence. Furthermore, Kegels are not appropriate for everyone and may cause increased pelvic pain when prescribed to the wrong person.
At your first appointment a physiotherapist will sit down with you to obtain your medical history. Following the history, the physiotherapist will perform an external and internal musculoskeletal examination. The internal assessment is done by the therapist gently inserting one finger into the vagina or anus and palpating each muscle group.
After the assessment has been completed, the physiotherapist will discuss the assessment and treatment plan with you. You are always welcome to bring another person with you to any and all physiotherapy appointments and have that person present during assessment/treatment.
Communication is very important to us! We believe in a multi-disciplinary collaborative approach to evaluate and address all components of pelvic health so that you receive the best treatment possible. Prior to your first appointment and throughout the treatment process, please feel free to contact us to ask questions or discuss concerns.