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Pelvic Health IN WOMEN Beth Lonberger, APRN, Family Nurse Practitioner

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1 Pelvic Health IN WOMEN Beth Lonberger, APRN, Family Nurse Practitioner
Julie Starr, APRN, Family Nurse Practitioner University of Missouri Hospital and Clinics Women’s and Children’s Hospital Center for Female Continence and Advanced Pelvic Surgery Our own backgrounds, who we work with and where exactly

2 objectives The participant will be able to:
Define pelvic health in the female List common diagnosis contributing to pelvic floor dysfunction Understand how pelvic organ prolapse, recurrent UTI and constipation effect bladder/bowel function Discuss treatment options for pelvic floor dysfunction Describe what we want them to get out of this presentation. We want it to be informal and for them to interact/ask questions.

3 PELVIC HEALTH Urinary continence Voiding less than 9xday and 0-1xnight
Absence of infection Complete emptying of rectum every day Adequate support of pelvic organs Well estrogenized vaginal tissue Sexual wellbeing

Urinary Dysfunction Urinary Incontinence Urinary urgency/frequency Nocturia Defecatory Dysfunction Constipation Fecal Incontinence Pelvic Floor Dyssynergia Pelvic Organ Prolapse Levator Ani Muscle Spasm Pelvic Pain Dyspareunia Urinary urgency/frequency/incontinence Obstructive outlet defecation

5 Urinary Incontinence Stress Urinary Incontinence Urge Incontinence
Coughing, Laughing, Sneezing, Lifting, Walking Urge Incontinence Urgency, Frequency, Triggers, Nocturia Overflow Incontinence Retention, Obstruction Functional Incontinence Frail, Decreased mobility

6 Prevalence

7 stress incontinence Treatment Options
Surgical Midurethral sling Bulking agents Nonsurgical Pessary Femsoft urethral insert Pelvic floor physical therapy

8 Urge Incontinence Treatment Options
Behavior modification Bowel regimen Premarin vaginal cream Medications Pelvic floor physical therapy (intracavity estim) PTNS Sacral Neuromodulation (Interstim)

9 URINARY FREQUENCY Voiding >8 times during the day Negatively effects quality of life, especially when associated with incontinence. Social isolation Depression Inactivity contributes to more serious health problems

10 NOCTURIA GETTING UP MORE THAN ONCE IN THE NIGHT TO VOID Causes: Recurrent UTIs, chronic renal failure, congestive heart failure, cystitis, diabetes, excessive fluid intake, elevated Ca+ level, sleep apnea. Increase risk of falls Disrupted sleep cycles Treatment: Imipramine 25-50mg q hs. Take Diuretic at noon. Gillen, L., Marinkovic, L., Stanton, S. Managing Nocturia. BMJ. 2004;328:

Urinary urgency/frequency, incontinence, dysuria, low back pain, delirium. Elderly often asymptomatic DIAGNOSIS RECURRENT UTIs Three or more UTIs in the past year or >2 in the past six months In and out cath specimen culture positive Cunha, BA, Tessler, JM, Bavaro, MF. Urinary Tract Infection, Females. Medscape. October, 19, 2009.

12 UROGENITAL ATROPHY Vaginal atrophy (atrophic vaginitis) is thinning and inflammation of the vaginal walls which occurs after menopause due to a decline in estrogen. Results in vaginal dryness, itching, burning and inadequate lubrication. Urinary symptoms include urgency/frequency, incontinence and recurrent UTIs. Pinkerton, J. Vaginal impact of menopause-related estrogen deficiency. OBG Management. 2010; S11-16.

13 UROGENITAL ATROPHY TREATMENT Premarin vaginal cream 0.625%
½ applicatorful 3 x week at bedtime for 4-6 weeks then decrease to ½ applicatorful 1xweek at hs for maintenance dose Estring (Estradiol vaginal ring) Vaginal ring containing 2mg of Estradiol releasing 0.75mcg in 24 hour period To be changed every 90 days

Refers to a multitude of complaints that may include having frequent and uncomfortable sensations to have a bowel movement, constipation or the feeling of poor emptying, and leakage of gas/ diarrhea/ and/or solid stool. 20% of women suffer from defecatory dysfunction. Among women with pelvic floor disorders, the prevalence of defecatory dysfunction was 60%. Whitcomb, E.; Lukacz, E.; Lawrence, J.; Nager, C.; Luber, K. Prevalence of Defecatory Dysfunction in Women with and Without Pelvic Floor Dysfunction. Journal of Pelvic Medicine & Surgery. 15(4): , July/August 2009.

15 Defecatory Dysfunction causes
Incomplete emptying Rectocele or perineal rectocele Pelvic floor muscle (Levator ani) spasm Sphincter incompetence Thickening of IAS and thinning of EAS Diet Dehydration Medications Decreased sensation Irritable Bowel Syndrome

16 Defecatory Dysfunction treatment
Bowel regimen (constipation, diarrhea…) Pessary (rectocele) Pelvic floor therapy Behavior modification Do not resist the urge to defecate Proper hydration Dietary changes Medication changes Exercise

17 BOWEL REGIMEN 1.Mix 1 rounded teaspoon of psyllium fiber (Metamucil® brand or Wal-Mart® Equate generic) in 6-8 ounces of cold water. Take this dose of fiber supplement a minimum of once per day. You may repeat this dose up to 3 times per day. Please do not take Metamucil within two hours of any medications. 2. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A BOWEL MOVEMENT WITHIN ONE HOUR OF RISING EACH MORNING, take one tablespoon of magnesium hydroxide (Phillips® Milk of Magnesia or a generic equivalent). Repeat this dose each hour until you have a bowel movement (do not exceed 6 doses in a day). Most patients will begin having daily bowel movements without the need for magnesium hydroxide within one week of therapy.

18 Fecal incontinence 6% of women <40 years old 15% of women >40
Nursing Home residents 45-47% 7% of all women have fecal smearing 50% of affected women keep FI a secret Ashima Makol; Madhusudan Grover; William E Whitehead. Fecal Incontinence in Women: Causes and Treatment. Women's Health. 2008;4(5):  

Behavior modification/dietary changes Metamucil daily and Immodium prn Pelvic floor therapy Surgical options Sphincteroplasty 5 year recurrence rate Up to 60%

Metamucil daily Loperamide prn 1 tab (2mg/tab) before each meal and bedtime up to 8 tabs/day 2 tabs (2mg/tab) at q meal and hs up to 16 tabs/day Diphenoxylate with atropine sulfate prn 1 tab (2.5mg/tab) at q meal and hs up to 8 tabs 2 tabs (2.5mg/tab) at q meal and h.s up to 8 tabs/day Bismuth subsilicylate prn 1-2 tabs (262mg/tab) before meals and h.s. not to exceed 4.2 g/day

21 Pelvic floor muscles (Levator Ani complex)
Pubococcygeus Coccygeus Ileococcygeus This group of muscles acts as a single neuromuscular unit to assist with proper support and function of the pelvis organs including normal urinary and fecal continence as well as genitourinary and rectal support.


LEVATOR ANI SYNDROME A COLLECTION OF SYMPTOMS AND FINDINGS The most common symptoms include Deep dull aching in the rectum/vagina Referred pain to the pelvis, thigh and buttock Pain worsens with sitting and bowel movements Spasms and pain in the pelvic floor muscle Pain during or after intercourse Urinary urgency/frequency possibly incontinence Constipation Prior testing usually rules out other pathologies


LEVATOR ANI COMPLEX Palpate 4-5 o’clock and 7-8 o’clock positions INTERNAL OBTURATOR Palpate 2 o’clock and 10 o’clock positions Single digit palpation of spastic muscle: feels like a guitar string or hard object reproduces the pain

PELVIC FLOOR PHYSICAL THERAPY Pelvic floor muscle exercises 4 x day Biofeedback Vaginal E-stim BEHAVIOR MANAGEMENT Warm baths/heat daily Yoga/daily stretching/Tai chi Relaxation/stress management/counseling MEDICATIONS Flexeril 5-10mg tid prn Ultram mg BID Valium suppositories 10mg vaginally bid prn Antidepressent/antianxiety agent

27 Pelvic Floor Therapy

28 Pelvic Floor Therapy Components
Abdominal EMG Measure use of accessory muscle Vaginal EMG Measure resting tone Anorectal manometry Measure muscle strength E-stim (vaginal or rectal) Neuromuscular stimulation (NMS)

29 pelvic floor therapy Benefits
Promotes pelvic floor muscle awareness Strength training Electric stimulation enhances muscle awareness and strength increases urethral closure pressure relaxes spasm 4-6 sessions of therapy Folkerts, D., Wood, K. Overactive bladder and urinary incontinence: A multitherapy approach to treatment. Sexuality, Reproduction & Menopause. 4(2), 2006.

30 INDICATIONS Urge Incontinence Stress Incontinence Fecal Incontinence
Pelvic Muscle Spasm Pelvic Floor Dyssynergia Pelvic Floor Muscle Weakness Health care problems aging women face % of all geriatric patients are incontinent

31 PATIENT REQUIREMENTS Cognitive awareness Active participation
At least partial innervation of PFM

32 Pelvic Floor Muscle EMG
At rest, continuous baseline activity consists of motor unit potentials of 2-4 MicroVolts


34 Anorectal Manometry Air filled balloon placed in the rectum
Records squeeze pressure of Levator Ani Can pick up valsalva and register as pressure Manometry is measured from zero Best for measuring true strength of muscle

35 Anorectal manometry initial visit

36 Anorectal Manometry Final visit

37 Abdominal EMG PURPOSE To a assist in isolation of pelvic floor muscles To monitor contraction of abdominal muscle as an accessory muscle

38 Duel Channel EMG



41 Intracavity Stimulation (e-stim)
Inhibits involuntary detrusor contractions Increases bladder capacity Decreases the intensity of urge sensation Decreases pelvic floor muscle spasm Increases urethral closure pressure

Increases muscle: Recruitment Strength Awareness




46 Mechanism of Action Produces a reflex muscle contraction
Contracts pelvic floor muscles Relaxation and inhibition of detrusor

47 Pelvic Muscle Exercise Essentials
Muscle Awareness Activation Promotes Function Must have regular exercise Avoid accessory muscles Overload Principle Progression

48 Methods of Teaching HOLDING BACK GAS Stopping urine stream
Contracting vagina Contracting rectum

49 HOME EXERCISE PROGRAM Usually 4x per day
More frequent with less repetitions for very weak muscle. Too much exercise will fatigue muscle and worsen symptoms.

50 Pelvic Organ Prolapse Uterine Prolapse (uterus) Cystocele (bladder)
Rectocele (rectum) Perineal Rectocele (perineum) Enterocele (vagina) What is Pelvic prolapse. This is what we see.


52 Conservative Management of Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Bowel Program Vaginal Estrogen Pessary

53 Pessary Vaginal support device for relief of symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse Indicated for women who do not desire surgery or are not good surgical candidates 92% satisfaction after 2 months Improvement of prolapse in 21% of patients after 1 year. Success is in patient selection Physical exam If you select the correct patient and fit them with a comfortable pessary, they are happy.

54 Types of Pessaries

55 PESSARY MANAGEMENT Proper fitting may require more than one visit every 2-3 weeks. Patient can be instructed on managing their pessary at home or return to clinic every 1-3 months for removal/reinsertion and exam. Estring can be replaced at this time

56 ETHEL HPI: Ethel is a 90 y/o with complaints of over active bladder x 2 years. Her bladder symptoms worsened with recent sacroplasty. She describes symptoms of stress incontinence, urgency/frequency and urge incontinence which worsened at night. She wears a Depends pad and a large Poise pad and changes this ensemble 5 x day

57 HPI cont. On an average day she drinks 3 glasses of water, 2 glasses of juice, 1 cup of coffee and 1 soda. She reports 4 UTIs in the past year. She takes Miralax every morning and reports 1-2 bowel movements per day and strains at stool. 24 hour pad weight 803 grams Bladder diary indicates 16 voids/24 hours She gets up 4 x night to void.

Patient reports conditions of HPTN, anemia, hernia, sinusitis, GERD, hypothyroidism, Raynaud’s syndrome, constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome. Surgical history includes sacroplasty, cholecystectomy, appendectomy, hysterectomy and ovariectomy.

59 DIAGNOSIS Stage II rectocele Perineal rectocele Defecatory dysfunction Urogenital atrophy Urinary urgency/frequency Urge incontinence Stress incontinence Urinary tract infection Recurrent urinary tract infections

60 TREATMENT PLAN Bowel regimen for her defecatory dysfunction. Premarin vaginal cream for urogenital atrophy. Fosfomycin 1 x dose to treat UTI. Trimethoprim 100mg q hs for recurrent UTIs. Oxybutynin prn for OAB. Pelvic floor therapy x 5 sessions. Imipramine 25mg q hs for nocturia.

61 OUTCOME Patient reported 100% improvement after 5 sessions of pelvic floor therapy. She voids 7-8 x day and 2 x night. Her daytime incontinence completely resolved and she leaks only drops during the night. She wears a panty liner for peace of mind. She remains on Trimethoprim at bedtime. She remains on Imipramine q hs. She takes Oxybutynin only when going out.

62 OUTCOME cont She continues with Premarin vaginal cream 1 x week.
She continues to do pelvic floor exercises 4 x day. She takes Metamucil daily and reports 1-2 bowel movements per day without straining. She just returned from a vacation with her family in which they drove over 500 miles in the car.

63 PATRICIA Patricia is a 78 y/o patient with a lifelong history of diarrhea predominant irritable bowel syndrome. She presents with symptoms of fecal incontinence for the past year. She reports leaking stool five minutes after she starts to exercise. She reports 1-2 bowel movements per day and strains at stool.

64 HPI cont Her urinary complaints include only mild stress incontinence. She wears a panty liner for peace of mind. She denies urinary urgency/frequency and gets up 1-2 times per night to void. She describes a burning perineal pain after intercourse and a soreness which lasts several hours. She uses Estrace cream for vaginal dryness.

Osteoporosis, diverticulosis and diarrhea predominant irritable bowel syndrome. G2P2 SVDx2 with largest birthweight 8# 13oz Surgical history includes hysterectomy, cystocele repair, cataract repair.

66 DIAGNOSIS Diarrhea predominant IBS Fecal incontinence Defecatory dysfunction Stress incontinence Stage I cystocele Stage I rectocele Lichen planus (bx positive)

67 TREATMENT Metamucil and Loperamide for treatment of defecatory dysfunction/IBS Continue Estrace cream for urogenital atrophy Clobetasol ointment for lichen planus Pelvic floor therapy x 4 sessions for fecal incontinence.

68 OUTCOME Patient reports 100% improvement in her fecal incontinence after 4 sessions of pelvic floor therapy. She reports 1 stool/day without straining with daily use of Metamucil. She is able to eat fruits and vegetables without GI complaints for the first time in years Her perineal burning/soreness have resolved. She exercises daily and no longer wears a pad.

69 LORI HPI: Lori is an 18 y/o G0 with history of sexual abuse starting at the age of 7. She was recently treated by Dr. Courtney Barr at the Center for Vulvar Diseases for vulvodynia which she reports is completely resolved. She describes an intermittent, stabbing LLQ pelvic pain which occurs 5-6 x day. She reports urinary urgency/frequency and mild urge incontinence.

70 HPI cont She often has a sensation that she is not emptying her bladder completely. Lori reports bowel movements every other day and strains at stool. She is not sexually active at this time.

Patient describes history of asthma and headaches. Surgical history negative.

72 DIAGNOSIS Urinary urge incontinence Defecatory dysfunction Levator spasm

73 TREATMENT PLAN Bowel regimen for her defecatory dysfunction. Pelvic floor therapy for levator spasm.

74 OUTCOME Patient reports 100% improvement in her symptoms after 4 sessions of pelvic floor therapy. She takes a daily dose of Metamucil and reports one bowel movement per day without straining. Her pelvic pain is completely resolved.

75 SHELBY HPI 24 y/o G0, RLQ pain for 9 months, appendectomy, 9 negative MRIs/CTs/Ultrasounds, seen in multiple clinics, ER throughout mid-MO Pain 8-9/10, worse when moving around, improved with rest and heating pad Urgency, urge incontinence (pad), sense of incomplete bladder emptying

76 HPI cont. Severe constipation with 1-2 BMs weekly Bloating
Pain with intercourse Worried about serious problem with ovary

Migraines Hypothyroid Appendectomy

78 DIAGNOSIS Urinary urgency Urge Incontinence Defecatory Dysfunction
Severe Levator spasm Dyspareunia

79 TREATMENT PLAN Bowel Regimen Home Exercises
4-6 sessions of PFT with estim Heat therapy Will consider colorectal consult

80 UPDATE Pain improving and started home program of e stim.
Defecatory dysfunction improving, but still a problem, BM every 2-3 days

81 ANNE HPI: Anne is a 70 y/o G2P2 with complaints of stress incontinence, urgency/frequency, urge incontinence and nocturia for the past 6-8 months. She wears a panty liner for protection but not every day. She reports one bowel movement every other day and strains at stool.

82 HPI cont On an average day she drinks 5-6 glasses of water, 1 glass of juice, 1 glass of milk, 2 cups of coffee, 1 glass of tea and 1 soda. Her bladder diary indicates she voids 7 x in 24 hours. Her 24 hour output averages 3400cc.

Patient reports no medical problems and has never had surgery. She reports two vaginal deliveries with a maximum birthweight of 8#15oz..

84 DIAGNOSIS Stage II cystocele Stage II rectocele Perineal rectocele Nocturia Urodynamic stress incontinence Urge incontinence Urogenital atrophy Defecatory dysfunction

85 TREATMENT Bowel regimen to treat defecatory dysfunction. Premarin vaginal cream for urogenital atrophy. Moderate fluids, especially in the evening. Pelvic floor therapy for urge and stress incontinence.

86 OUTCOME Patient reports 85% improvement in her symptoms after 6 sessions of pelvic floor therapy. Her urge incontinence has resolved and she continues with mild stress incontinence 2-3 x month. She continues on Premarin vaginal cream 1 x week for urogenital atrophy. She continues with pelvic floor exercises and urge suppression techniqes daily. She continues to moderate her caffeine intake.

87 OUTCOME cont Anne was so pleased with her results but her best friend’s bladder was limiting her lifestyle. Her friend completed a course of pelvic floor therapy. They have just returned from two weeks in Italy and reported complete bladder control and no anxiety about being on a tour bus all day

How to Identify the Correct Muscle To find the proper muscle, imagine having to pass gas while with a group of people. In order not to embarrass yourself, you squeeze the muscles around your rectum to hold the gas back. This is the muscle you want to exercise. Common Mistakes Never use the muscles in your stomach, legs, buttocks, and don’t hold your breath. To be sure you are not using your abdominal muscles, place your hand on your abdomen while you squeeze the pelvic floor muscle. If you are feeling your abdomen move, you are also using your stomach muscle. How to Exercise When exercising it is important to squeeze and relax your muscles as prescribed. One work/ rest cycle is one exercise. If while you exercise you no longer feel the contraction, the muscle is tired. Stop and rest for a few minutes and then go back to the exercises. Where to Exercise These exercises can be done anywhere at any time. If you are doing them properly, your legs, stomach, thighs and buttocks will not move, and no one will know you are doing your exercises. Do the exercise sitting or lying down when you first start the program. After eight weeks you can do them standing, sitting or lying. Can These Exercises Harm Me? NO! These exercises cannot harm you in any way. If you experience back or stomach discomfort after you exercise, then you are trying too hard and using extra muscles. Relax, and start over. Prescribed Exercise Contract the muscle for 5 seconds, and then relax for 10 seconds (this is one exercise or cycle). Do 5 exercises in a row. Repeat this 4 times each day. If you perform them with an activity that you routinely do every day, you will be more likely to remember them. Mealtimes, bedtime and driving in the car are very common. New mothers can perform them while bottle/breast feeding. Increase the contraction time by one second and one repetition every two weeks (always continue 4 x day). Your goal is contract for ten seconds, relax for ten seconds. Do 10 exercises in a row 4 x day.

When you feel the urge: Stop what you are doing. Sit down, if it is possible, or stand quietly. Remain still. Rushing to the bathroom may cause you to lose control of your bladder. When you are still, the urge is easier to control. Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles quickly several times. (Contract 2 seconds, relax for one second, 5-6 times in a row) Relax the rest of your body. Take a few breaths to help you relax. Wait until the urge goes away. Walk slowly to the toilet. Do not rush.

90 BOWEL REGIMEN 1.Mix 1 rounded teaspoon of psyllium fiber (Metamucil® brand or Wal-Mart® Equate generic) in 6-8 ounces of cold water. Take this dose of fiber supplement a minimum of once per day. You may repeat this dose up to 3 times per day. Please do not take Metamucil within two hours of any medications. 2. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A BOWEL MOVEMENT WITHIN ONE HOUR OF RISING EACH MORNING, take one tablespoon of magnesium hydroxide (Phillips® Milk of Magnesia or a generic equivalent). Repeat this dose each hour until you have a bowel movement (do not exceed 6 doses in a day). Most patients will begin having daily bowel movements without the need for magnesium hydroxide within one week of therapy.

91 Skin care


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