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What is the Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor is made up of a group of muscles that support the bladder, uterus (womb) and bowel. The pelvic floor muscles attach to your pubic bone at the front, and to your tail bone at the back and from the base of your tail bone.
What is the purpose of the pelvic floor muscles?
The pelvic floor muscles ensure that the processes controlled by your bladder, uterus and bowel – such as controlling your bladder and bowel – function. When they are strong, the pelvic floor muscles prevent incontinence and prolapse of the uterus, bowel and bladder.
What causes pelvic floor dysfunction?
Many people suffer from symptoms relating to a weak pelvic floor. The pelvic floor can become weak for a variety of reasons, including some of the following:
- repeated straining to empty bowels
- old age
- being overweight
- excessive coughing
Miss Lucy Allen, Pelvic Health Physiotherapist and Biofeedback specialist at OneWelbeck Digestive Surgery gives an overview of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction, what can cause it, the common symptoms and how it is diagnosed and treated.
What can you expect from a Pelvic Floor Assessment?
Before assessing your pelvic floor, your physician will ask you about your medical history, including your symptoms, weight, and your medical, surgical and obstetric history.
The examination itself will start off with an external examination followed by an internal examination if you are comfortable. Having a vaginal or rectal examination will provide your clinician with information on how your pelvic floor and anal sphincter muscles are working both for strength and coordination.