Womens’ Health

A specialist service which focuses on pelvic floor and musculoskeletal dysfunctions that may cause a variety of problems including pelvic pain, poor bladder & bowel control and prolapse. Gina combines her extensive experience in both musculoskeletal physiotherapy and pelvic floor rehabilitation in treatment. Some of the conditions treated are listed below.

  • Pelvic Floor Control

Weak pelvic floor muscles can cause many problems:

Incontinence is an embarrassing and distressing condition affecting up to one in three women and one in ten men of all age groups and can affect both bladder and bowel

Stress Incontinence is the most common type and is when the bladder leaks under pressure, perhaps with a cough or sneeze, when playing sport or during intercourse. The pelvic floor muscles which support the pelvic organs (bladder, womb & bowel) may not be able to cope with the increased pressure. Weakness of these muscles can result from childbirth and may be exacerbated by other factors such as age, constipation, chronic cough and being overweight, or in the case of men after prostate surgery

You may also experience ‘urgency‘ and ‘frequency‘ of bladder or bowel and have a problem with needing to go often to the toilet and of possibly not always getting there in time

Prolapse occurs when there is descent of the pelvic organs (bladder, womb, bowel) causing a bulge into the vagina. It can be disconcerting and uncomfortable and may make it difficult to pass urine. Pelvic floor muscle training can improve prolapse symptoms

  • Pregnancy related back pain & Pelvic girdle dysfunction

The joints at the front and back of the pelvis can become painful. This very disabling condition can become a particular problem during pregnancy due to softening of ligaments and postural changes as your baby grows. Likewise the extra strain on the spine may cause back pain

  • Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain may be termed chronic pelvic pain or CPP/CPPS if present for 6 months or more. Pelvic pain can be due to dysfunction of the pelvic floor muscles and other imbalances of the musculoskeletal system and can include:

Dyspareunia – painful sexual intercourse.  Vaginismus – over activity of the pelvic floor muscles.  Pudendal Neuralgia – pain involving the pudendal nerve which supplies the pelvic region.  Interstitial Cystitis – a condition which affects the bladder causing urgency, frequency and pain.

Assessment

This will include discussion about your work, lifestyle and medical history. If your problem is with continence, prolapse or pelvic pain it may include, with your consent, an internal examination to assess the strength and function of your pelvic floor muscles. For pregnancy related back or pelvic girdle pain and for pelvic pain, it will also include an examination of your posture and the joints and muscles of your lumbar spine and pelvis.

The assessment will determine whether physiotherapy is a suitable option for your problem. The clinical diagnosis and possible treatments will be discussed with you. Throughout treatment you will be involved with any decisions that have to be made and, if necessary, your doctor can be kept informed of your progress.