Physical Therapy Post Prolapse Surgery

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Recently, we have gotten questions regarding exercising the pelvic floor post operative surgery for pelvic organ prolapse. At a whole, the lifetime risk for women undergoing surgery for repair of pelvic organ prolapse is 11%. 27% of women will have repeat surgery.1You and your surgeon may decide on post operative pelvic floor physical therapy to help strengthen the muscles of your pelvic floor. One of the reasons for considering a pelvic floor physical therapist is that every women is different and there is not a one size fits all physical therapy treatment. I spoke with Lizanne Pastore, PT, MA, COMT a physical therapist in Petaluma, CA who filled me in on the process a physical therapist will take to customize exercises based on the individual. A physical therapist will first do a comprehensive exam to evaluate general health status and review medical history. This helps to determine what other contributing factors might be present. They will also evaluate your post operative healing and recovery process. Then based on the physical condition post op, age, and contributing factors a regimen of physical therapy exercises will be prescribed. The exercises will focus on strengthening and conditioning the pelvic floor and core abdominal muscle area.
Your physical therapist should also help you with breathing techniques that cover breathing for resting, rehabilitation, lifting, and working. Interested in finding a pelvic floor physical therapist in your area? Try the National Association For Continences Find an Expert tool or e-mail us at [email protected]

References:
1. Olsen AL, Smith, Bergstrom, et al: Epidemiology of surgically managed pelvic organ prolapse and urinary incontinence. Obstetrics and Gynecology 89:501-506, 1997.

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