Pelvic Floor Disorder
You may think pelvic health issues, such as incontinence and prolapse, are just part of being a mom or getting older. The truth is, while pelvic floor disorders are common, you should not just accept them.
At Henry Ford, our compassionate experts understand that these issues are sensitive. That’s why we’ve created a welcoming, professional environment where you can feel comfortable seeking treatment for pelvic floor disorders.
With an accurate diagnosis and targeted treatment plan, you can overcome pelvic floor disorder. We’ll help you regain confidence and get back to doing the things you love.
Symptoms of pelvic floor problems
Pelvic floor disorders shouldn’t be ignored and shouldn’t be cause for embarrassment. Talk to your doctor if you’re experiencing symptoms such as:
- Frequent urge to urinate (overactive bladder)
- Urine leakage when you cough, laugh, exercise or lift heavy objects (stress incontinence)
- A sensation of heaviness or pulling in your vagina Constipation Stool leakage (bowel incontinence)
- A bulge near the vaginal opening (a sign of a condition called pelvic organ prolapse)
Causes of pelvic floor disorders
Your pelvic floor is made up of muscles, ligaments and connective tissues. Together they form a support system for your bladder, bowels, uterus, vagina and rectum. When that support is damaged, problems — such as incontinence — can result.
Experts don’t completely understand why some women get pelvic floor disorders and other don’t. While pelvic floor disorders do affect women more as they get older, these issues aren’t an inevitable result of age. Some factors that increase your risk include:
- Childbirth (particularly vaginal delivery)
- Weak pelvic floor muscles
- Chronic constipation
- Frequent heavy lifting or strenuous activity
Pelvic floor disorder diagnosis and treatment
If you have symptoms of a pelvic floor disorder, you doctor will perform several tests to confirm an accurate diagnosis. These tests may include:
Urine analysis: We test your urine to check for signs of infection or kidney problems.
Bladder ultrasound: This helps us see whether or not your bladder empties completely when you urinate.
Bladder cystoscopy: We use an instrument called a cystocope to look inside the bladder. This allows us to see any problems, such as tumors or irritation.
Urodynamic testing: This procedure tests how well your bladder can hold and empty urine.
Anal manometry: We use a device called a manometer to measure the strength of your anal sphincter muscles.
Treatment for pelvic floor problems
Treatment varies depending on the cause of the problem. Treatment may include pelvic muscle exercises (Kegel maneuvers), medications, or special interventional therapies including minimally invasive surgery, robotic surgery, nerve stimulation and Botox.