WHAT ARE PELVIC FLOOR DISORDERS?
The pelvic floor is a term we use to describe the muscles, ligaments and connective tissue that provide support for a woman’s internal organs (including the bowel, bladder, uterus, vagina, and rectum). Not only does the pelvic floor prevent these organs from falling down or out, but it also plays a very important role in making the organs function properly. The brain controls the muscles of the pelvic floor by way of nerves. Any medical conditions or injuries that impact the health of nerves (such as diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, back surgery, spinal stenosis, or childbirth trauma) can result in weakness of the pelvic floor muscles.
Pelvic Floor Disorders
Women with weakness of the pelvic muscles or tears in the connective tissue may begin to have problems controlling their bladder and bowels. They often describe urine leakage (urinary incontinence), bowel gas or stool leakage (anal incontinence), difficulty emptying their bladder (voiding dysfunction), overactive bladder, or having a bowel movement (constipation). Some women also feel or see tissue coming out of the opening of their vagina. This can be a prolapsing cervix and uterus or the walls of the vagina.
It is possible to experience one or several of these signs and symptoms of pelvic floor disorders. Urogynecologists are specially trained to diagnose and treat these problems.
Source: AUGS Foundation