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Pelvic Pain and Sexual Dysfunction

Pelvic pain is constant or intermittent pain experienced between the belly button and the tops of the legs. Pelvic pain affects up to 25% of our population, which is more common than asthma (10%) or back pain (14%), and it has a significant impact on a person’s quality of life.

Patients suffering with pelvic pain often find it difficult to obtain a specific diagnosis, and effective management. Pelvic pain lasting beyond 6 months is called Persistent/Chronic Pelvic Pain, and has numerous causes and symptoms. If your pain is experienced only with attempts of vaginal penetration (sex, pap smears, tampons), it is called Genito-Pelvic Pain Disorder, Vaginismus or Provoked Vulvodynia. Persistent Pelvic Pain may involve the Pudendal Nerve, and consequently could be defined as Pudendal Neuralgia/Entrapment. Learn more about these conditions here: Pudendal Neuralgia.

Vulvodynia is another term given to overactive nerve endings in the vulval region, which may give rise to a constant burning feeling in the vulva. PGAD is a pelvic pain condition which involves a constant and unwelcome feeling of genital arousal. Needless to say, all of these conditions have a significant impact on women’s quality of life. It is common that women with pelvic pain will have other symptoms alongside their primary issue. This is primarily due to the vast neural network in the pelvis, which connects the organs to the muscles and the fascia.

Such symptoms can include the following:

  • Pain anywhere in the pelvis
  • Pain, difficulty or inability to urinate or defecate
  • Incomplete emptying of the bladder or bowel
  • Frequency and urgency of the bladder
  • Pain or irritability in the bladder
  • UTI type symptoms
  • Pain, difficulty or inability to have sex
  • Pain, difficulty or inability to sit

Sydney Pelvic Clinic has expertise in managing all these sub-groups of female pelvic pain. We will work with you to create a uniquely individualised management plan to help you regain your optimal pelvic health and ultimately improve the quality of your life.

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