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Pelvic Health Physical Therapy

Physical therapists are licensed clinicians trained to evaluate and treat neuro-musculoskeletal conditions. Pelvic health is a specialty area in physical therapy which addresses pregnancy, post-partum and pelvic pain.

Here at Hennepin Healthcare, we have physical therapists that have been certified in various specialties including obstetrics and pelvic health through the American Physical Therapy Association Section on Women’s Health.

Obstetric women’s health physical therapy

Obstetric conditions that our obstetrics certified physical therapists can evaluate and treat include:

  • Prenatal musculoskeletal dysfunction
  • Labor & delivery positioning for orthopedic conditions
  • Postnatal musculoskeletal dysfunction
  • Incontinence
  • Breastfeeding Support including:
    • Positioning
    • Postural education
    • Blocked duct/mastitis management

Pelvic health physical therapy

Pelvic health conditions that our pelvic health certified physical therapists evaluate and treat include:

  • Painful bladder syndrome such as interstitial cystitis
  • Urethral syndrome
  • Pudendal neuralgia: neuropathy, neuralgia, entrapment
  • Vaginismus
  • Vulvodynia
  • Vestibulodynia
  • Dysperinea
  • Chronic pelvic pain
    • Myofacial-connective tissue
    • Osteo/joint
    • Musculoskeletal-degenerative disc disease
    • Gastrointestinal
    • Gynecological
  • Voiding Issues:
    • Incontinent bladder
      • Stress incontinence
      • Urge incontinence
      • Mixed incontinence
    • Irritable bowel syndrome
    • Constipation

What to expect

  • Once a referral to physical therapy is received from you or your health care provider, you will be scheduled for a one-hour evaluation with one of our highly trained physical therapists.
  • Based on the evaluation, a detailed and specific plan of care is established including treatment, home program, frequency and duration of appointments.

What are some common obstetrics and pelvic health treatments?

Sessions include some or all of the following:

Exercise therapy: strengthening to improve core activation during pregnancy and post-partum, stretching to decrease pain associated with postural changes during pregnancy, and restoring strength to pelvic floor muscles and core.

Positioning/body mechanics: includes labor & delivery strategies, comfort positions, instruction in functional neutral in pregnancy and breastfeeding positions.

Manual therapy: includes a variety of hands-on techniques to improve pelvic alignment, spinal function and pelvic pain, and reducing muscle tension in pelvic floor.

Skin care: includes scar mobilizations following caesarian sections, hysterectomies, prostate surgery or urologic surgeries.

Biofeedback training: a tool used so clients can learn how to isolate pelvic floor muscles to strengthen them to help restore continence and support pelvic organs. Biofeedback is also used for relaxation of pelvic muscles for those clients with pelvic pain issues. Biofeedback training is also beneficial for clients who have poor coordination of pelvic muscles aiding in treatment of constipation and other voiding issues.

Supportive belt/brace: includes evaluation of posture and joint mechanics, in pregnancy and postpartum to determine most appropriate device.

Therapeutic ultrasound: to treat blocked ducts and improve breast flow during breastfeeding.

Contact us

Contact your health care provider for a referral to Physical Therapy Women’s Health Specialty Service. Your referring practitioner may want to screen you to be sure you are appropriate for physical therapy. Some therapies are also available at the Whittier Clinic.

If you have questions, call 612-873-4377 and ask to speak to a physical therapist who specializes in women's health.

Healthy Matters | WCCO

Ask the Physical Therapists

Dr. Hilden discusses physical therapy with Physical Therapists Beth Stegora and Kelly Rettman.

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