Pelvic Health Physiotherapy

NHS UCLH MATERNITY WAITING 2 11501

Pelvic Health & Pregnancy

Pelvic floor anatomy & education

How to contract your pelvic floor

Pelvic girdle pain - education and management

Pelvic Girdle Pain - exercise video

Pelvic Health Physiotherapy

Specialist Pelvic Health Physiotherapists work across all sites within the Northern Care Alliance and depending on the location can accept referrals from both GP’s and Consultants.

We treat a variety of conditions including urinary and faecal incontinence (problems controlling the bladder or bowel) in men and women, prolapses, pelvic pain, sexual problems if associated with pelvic floor dysfunction, over active bladder symptoms such as urgency or frequency, pregnancy related pain, postnatal problems and rehabilitation.

Pelvic health Physiotherapy is recommended by NICE as the first line of treatment specifically for women with urinary incontinence. In a recent audit conducted across our sites it was shown that over 70% of our patients with urinary incontinence improve, therefore demonstrating the effectiveness of our service. Our aim is to help our clients minimise their symptoms and self-manage effectively to avoid further invasive treatment and maintain a high quality of life.

We also have a close working relationship with the Urogynaecology service and where appropriate we may recommend onward referral for further investigations or intervention.

For further information refer to:

What to expect when you attend

You will be seen by a female specialist Physiotherapist in a private room. The initial consultation involves a detailed assessment to establish your history, main problems and goals. We understand this can be a personal and sensitive issue. This appointment can take up to an hour.

If appropriate, and with your consent, we will conduct an internal examination of your pelvic floor. You can request a chaperone if necessary.

We then establish an individualised treatment plan for you, discuss your diagnosis, treatment options and self-management and arrange follow up review as appropriate.

Pelvic Health Physiotherapy - Leaflet

Stress Incontinence

Stress incontinence is the involuntary loss of urine when there is increased abdominal pressure for example when coughing, sneezing or exercising. This is a common problem for women with 1 in 3 being affected, however supervised pelvic floor muscle training is highly effective in treating this condition.

Urgency or Urge incontinence

This is the sudden desire to go the bathroom to urinate, and sometimes with the inability to get there in time and therefore leaking. There are several reasons why this happens including inappropriate fluid intake, over activity of the bladder and pelvic floor weakness.

Again this is a common problem but it can be helped with an individual exercise programme, lifestyle measures and bladder retraining.

Mixed Urinary Incontinence

Often people have a combination of both stress incontinence and urge incontinence. We can work with you to treat both these problems.

Prolapse

Pelvic organ prolapse (the downward movement of one or more of the walls of the vagina) is a common problem for women, with 50% of women over 50 having some degree of prolapse. We can help patients establish an effective strengthening regime to minimise the symptoms, and discuss appropriate strategies to ensure patients can continue to self-manage this condition.

We can also discuss other management options if necessary.

Pelvic Girdle Pain

Pain associated with pregnancy is very common (affecting approximately 1 in 5 women), particularly around the lower back and pelvis and it can be debilitating for women. This is often referred to as pelvic girdle pain (PGP) and it usually resolves after your baby is born. You should try to keep active during your pregnancy although you may need to modify your activities. Regular gentle exercise has been shown to help ease PGP, and is safe for you and your baby. You should avoid exercising lying on your back or taking part in sports where you could fall or be injured in the stomach. Physiotherapy can help with further advice and education; self-management strategies; exercises; guidance on support belts; and walking aids if needed. You may also be referred for rehabilitation post-natally if you have ongoing problems after the birth.

Your GP or midwife can refer you to Physiotherapy if you are experiencing pain.

Physical activity in pregnancy

Fit for Pregnancy

Pelvic Girdle Pain

Pelvic Girdle Pain - Leaflet

Postnatal Rehabilitation

Women following childbirth often experience many changes in their bodies including pelvic floor weakness and diastasis recti (a gap in the centre of your abdominal muscles). This can lead to various symptoms and a difficulty returning to normal functional activities and exercise. We endeavour to assist you to rehabilitate and provide guidance on how to return to normal activity.

Fit for the Future - essential advice and exercises following childbirth

Diastasis Recti Educational Video 

Diastasis Recti Exercises - video  

Physical activity for women after childbirth (birth to 12 months)

Ready-steady go-ensuring-postnatal-women-are-run-ready

Exercise and Advice following pregnancy

Pilates in Pregnancy

Men’s Health

Specialised Physiotherapists can treat men with a variety of pelvic health problems including post prostate surgery, incontinence, overactive bladder symptoms and pelvic pain.

Bowel Problems

We also help treat people with bowel problems including faecal incontinence, faecal urgency and constipation. Treatment includes an individual exercise programme, advice on self-management strategies and signposting to other services as appropriate.

Pelvic Pain

We can also treat a variety of conditions that result in pelvic pain, or sexual pain especially when related to pelvic floor dysfunction.

The treatment will be individual depending on your symptoms, the examination findings and your specific goals but may include exercises, pain management strategies or manual therapy.

All these conditions can greatly affect a person’s quality of life in many different ways. They can affect anybody at any age. Although they are common problems they are not normal and our experienced team can help to improve your symptoms and advise on self-management strategies.