Pelvic pain is not something most women want to discuss, but it’s more common than many realize. Most women will experience at least some form of pelvic discomfort in her lifetime, and chronic pelvic pain — pain that lasts for six months or longer.
Despite its prevalence, pelvic pain is not widely understood in the healthcare community. Women who experience chronic pelvic pain may visit a number of physicians and specialists in hopes of understanding the cause of the disease and what they can do to relieve their symptoms.
Causes of Pelvic Pain
One of the most difficult things about understanding and treating pelvic pain is narrowing down what exactly could be the cause of it.
- Endometriosis, in which the tissue that lines the uterus also grows outside the uterus which can cause discomfort and even fertility problems
- Pelvic adhesive disease, which causes adhesions — abnormal tissue that can form due to infection, inflammation or after surgery — that causes organs, such as ovaries and fallopian tubes, to stick to surrounding tissues and organs
- Pelvic inflammatory disease, which is an infection that is usually acquired through sexual transmission — though it can also be caused by problems like diverticulitis, tuberculosis or a ruptured appendix — that can involve the fallopian tubes, ovaries or uterus
- Non-gynecological causes can also be the source of chronic pelvic pain, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or fibromyalgia.
- The pain can also be a product of a condition called painful bladder syndrome, or PBS, as well as interstitial cystitis (IC). Collectively, PBS/IC refers to bladder pain that’s not caused from a bladder infection. PBS/IC can cause you to need to urinate frequently or urgently, and many women with PBS/IC also present with pain in their pelvis or lower abdomen.
- Another possible cause is pelvic floor dysfunction, which can cause pain in the pelvis, as well as pain with urination. Pelvic floor pain can also make it difficult to urinate, cause constipation and pain with intercourse.
An Abundance of Treatments Available
Treatment depends on the cause of pelvic pain — which itself cannot always be easily determined. Finding a pelvic pain expert will give you the best chance of receiving an accurate diagnosis. An accurate diagnosis is crucial in relieving your pain and creating a care plan to keep the pain away!
Once a diagnosis has been made, your provider will create a treatment plan that aligns with your lifestyle and preferences. Our treatment options include medications, hormonal therapies, pelvic floor strengthening, minimally invasive surgical procedures, and even a variety of natural therapies including acupuncture. Our team specializes in a multitude of advanced treatments options so you can choose what is right for you based off of the diagnostic work-up and recommendations from your provider.
As mentioned above, many women spend years to find a specialist to help diagnose and treat their pelvic pain condition. Our team understands your frustration and that you may have lost hope in relieving your symptoms. We encourage you to call Women’s Excellence today and schedule a virtual visit to discuss your options with one of our compassionate providers. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and our team will work diligently to get you there!