Endometriosis and Pelvic Physical Therapy
What is endometriosis?
The most common symptoms of endometriosis are painful periods, pain with intercourse, pain with bowel movements or urination, infertility, and/or diarrhea during periods. Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus, the endometrium, grows outside your uterus. Said tissue thickens, breaks down and bleeds, just like the tissue inside the uterus, with each menstrual cycle, but unlike the tissue that grows in your uterus the endometrial tissue has no way out of your body and becomes trapped. This trapped endometrial tissue can cause the surrounding tissues to become irritated, developing scar tissue and leading to abnormal bands of fibrous tissue that can cause pelvic tissues and organs to stick to each other, commonly called adhesions.
How can pelvic health physical therapy help with endometriosis?
If you do have endometriosis, or suspect that you do, pelvic floor physical therapy can help you manage your symptoms. While we can not “cure” endometriosis we can help reduce your pain, especially with your menstrual cycle, intercourse, urination and bowel movements. Your pelvic floor physical therapist will work with you to reduce adhesions and scar tissue limiting your movement and pelvic floor extensibility, often causing pain with intercourse or use of a tampon. They will also get you set up with a stretching and exercise program to continue to maintain your progress.
How does pelvic health physical therapy fit in with your care by other medical providers?
We strongly believe in working as a team with your other medical providers in order to help you achieve your goals and to keep you moving forward. Most, if not all, of our patients are also working with their providers on medications to also help manage their symptoms. Some patients have found working with either their medical provider or a nutritionist on dietary changes, such as an anti-inflammatory diet, also helpful.