Understanding Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
Individuals who are unable to control the group of muscles and ligaments beneath their pelvis may have pelvic floor dysfunction, a condition that affects one fourth of women in the United States. Frequent urination and constipation are two common symptoms of this condition. Our team of highly trained physicians in Garden City, NY, can diagnose and treat pelvic floor dysfunction at one of our six offices. The condition is more than an embarrassing aggravation. Left untreated, pelvic floor dysfunction can lead to colon damage or infection.
What Is Pelvic Floor Dysfunction?
The pelvic region holds a number of vital organs, including the bladder, rectum, and reproductive organs. The muscles that physically support and contain these organs form the pelvic floor and aid with functions such as controlling bowel movements and urination. When these muscles and ligaments do not contract and relax properly, bowel movements can be difficult or incomplete, and normal function of these organs can be adversely impacted.
Symptoms of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
Given the number of organs and muscles that can be affected by weak pelvic floor muscles, there are multiple symptoms that could point toward pelvic floor dysfunction. Some of the more common symptoms include:
- Inability to complete bowel movements
- Painful urination
- Lower back pain that is unrelated to normal fatigue
- Pain during intercourse
- Frequent need to urinate
- Stool or urine leakage
- Muscle spasms in pelvic region
- Pressure in pelvic region
Since many of the symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction overlap with other common disorders, a careful evaluation by our doctors is needed to confirm if you have pelvic floor dysfunction.
Common Causes of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
While studies are yet to determine the exact causes of pelvic floor dysfunction, the condition has been linked to:
- Abdominal surgery
- Nerve damage
- Overstraining of pelvic muscles
There is also a strong correlation between age and pelvic floor dysfunction. Among women aged 80 and older, the condition is reported at nearly 50 percent, according to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, and featured on the National Institutes of Health website.
Treatment Options for Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
The team of trained physicians at Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists will provide treatment options after consulting with you and administering a comprehensive examination. Many effective treatment options do not involve surgery. In some cases, meditation, warm baths, yoga, and other relaxation techniques can correct deficiencies in the pelvic floor.
Our physicians use advanced diagnostic techniques while maintaining an emphasis on quality care, compassion, and dignity.
Biofeedback treatments have been shown to provide positive results in 75 percent of patients who undergo this therapeutic option. Using sensors and video to monitor the pelvic floor region, patients observe their body and relearn how to properly relax and contract muscles in the pelvic region. The program is closely monitored by a physical therapist. Muscle relaxants can help in certain cases, and surgery may be recommended if the dysfunction is the result of rectal prolapse, rectocele, or other similar circumstances.
Take the First Step to Correcting Pelvic Floor Function
The first step toward regaining proper control of your pelvic floor is to consult with one of the skilled doctors at Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York. Our physicians use advanced diagnostic techniques while maintaining an emphasis on quality care, compassion, and dignity. With the proper treatment, you can regain the quality of life you deserve. To learn more about treatment options for pelvic floor dysfunction, contact us online or call (516) 844-0248.