Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
The muscles, ligaments, nerves, and fascia can all drive pain, which is why many people with endometriosis find pelvic floor therapy (PFT) to be helpful. Many often do PFT as a next step after having excision. However, it can be helpful prior to excision too, or just in general! PFT may help with vulvodynia, painful sex, constipation/diarrhea, Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome, pelvic pain, leg pain, and more.
PFT may include:
- manual therapy
- trigger point release
- breathing exercises
- connective and scar tissue mobilization
- posture correction
- and more
It may involve internal as well as external work, but the therapist will get your consent before doing any internal work. There are also wands and other tools, as well as stretches and techniques that they can show you how to use at home to work on your pelvic floor. Patients often have 1-2 sessions per week for 8-12 weeks.
Your therapist should have experience with endometriosis
Just like we need to see an actual specialist in endometriosis and not just any gynecologist for our endometriosis treatment, we need to see a pelvic floor therapist who is familiar with treating patients with endometriosis. Pelvic floor therapy is not one size fits all, and some pelvic floor therapists may not have the knowledge to treat the pelvic floor of someone with endometriosis.
For more info
- Pelvic Physical Therapy – Overview and PFT myths on Nancy’s Nook
- Physical Therapy Resources – Resources from Nancy’s Nook
- Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis: What is What! – Video from the Endometriosis Summit
- Vulvodynia and Endometriosis: How PT Can Help Both Disorders and More – Video from the Endometriosis Summit with Dr Amy Stein
- Endometriosis, Your Pelvic Floor, and You – Video from the Endometriosis Summit
- The A-Z of Physiotherapy Treatments in Endometriosis – Written by Ruth Schubert: physiotherapist. This specific article is helpful to understand PFT, but I don’t endorse the rest of the endometriosis educational posts on their website.
- Beyond Basics Blog – Beyond Basics is a PFT practice in NY founded by Dr Amy Stein, who co-wrote Beating Endo and Heal Pelvic Pain
- Prosayla – “The premier educational resource for female sexual medicine”