PELVIC FLOOR DYSFUNCTION
WHAT IS PELVIC FLOOR DYSFUNCTION?
Pelvic floor dysfunction occurs when the muscles and layers of tissue become weak and are unable to support the pelvic organs, resulting in pelvic pain or problems with maintaining continence. The pressure in our abdomen constantly changes in our day-day tasks. When we cough, sneeze, lift or bend, our deep abdominal and back muscles and our pelvic floor work to withstand these changes in pressure. Over time, these muscles can get weak and the pelvic floor can stretch, especially if the pressure changes occur frequently. Signs of pelvic floor dysfunction can be varied, The most common sign of pelvic floor dysfunction is leakage when you cough, sneeze, run or jump. Other symptoms include not being able to "hold on" when you need to go to the toilet, feeling a heaviness or dragging feeling in the vagina, straining when moving your bowels, or suffering from haemorrhoids. In addition, those who have long-standing low back, pelvic or groin pain can have a pelvic floor dysfunction. In this instance, the pelvic floor muscles don't work together with the deep abdominal and deep back muscles so core stability is compromised which can cause pain.
WHEN CAN ELECTRICAL MUSCLE STIMULATION BE USEFUL?
If you are unable to activate your pelvic floor muscles, are unsure whether you are using these muscles in the correct way, or have tried doing these exercises to assist in the treatment of incontinence without much success, you may benefit from the use of electrical stimulation. Following a detailed assessment by a specialised Continence and Women’s Health physiotherapist, you will discuss whether this type of stimulation is an appropriate treatment option for you.
Continence electrostimulation can also be of assistance to those after having a radical prostatectomy. In addition to this, studies have recently shown that pelvic floor electrostimulation can be of assistance in the treatment of erectile dysfunction when used in combination with lifestyle changes such as weight loss, cessation of smoking, reduction of alcohol intake, increasing general fitness and liaising with your medical practitioner. It has also been shown to reduce pain and discomfort in the penile, testicular and anal areas.