Educate, Assess, Treat
Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy can help to control pelvic problems that cause women years of suffering, like incontinence or chronic and recurring pelvic pain. Guided by the urogynecological expertise of Dr. Murphy, pelvic physiotherapy includes educating, assessing and providing treatment to patients in an effort to alleviate their pelvic health problems. Pelvic floor physiotherapy aims to strengthen the all-important muscles lining your pelvic floor. These are the same muscles used to control an urge to urinate or defecate and support the uterus, bladder and rectum.
Exercises involve the repetitive contraction of the levator ani and sphincter muscles to the point of exhaustion. One might see this as “bodybuilding” of the pelvis. Just as bodybuilding is extremely hard work and has to be done diligently and for a long period of time to see any effects, pelvic floor exercises do not provide a quick fix.
For the highly motivated individual woman, especially those without severe pelvic fascia or nerve injuries, diligently performed pelvic floor exercises could make a big difference and sometimes even help to cure. Exercise will increase muscle strength, but unfortunately it has no effect on damaged nerves or fascia, especially tears or disruption.
There are some studies indicating significant reduction in the need for surgery for stress incontinence after six weeks of repeated and properly performed pelvic exercises. Patients may not know how to activate these unused muscles so during a pelvic exam, Dr. Murphy can help focus you on the muscles needed during that examination by asking you to tighten here (rectally) and then here (vaginally). By identifying the muscle groups in this way, the proper neuromuscular connections can be made very quickly.