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recurrent pelvic inflammatory disease

Happy National Condom Week!

Are you suffering from recurrent pelvic inflammatory disease and/or chronic pelvic pain? Condoms may help reduce the risk.

Condoms are an effective barrier method of contraception (82% effective, according to the CDC) and reduce the spread of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) including HIV, gonorrhea, and Chlamydia.

There are other benefits. Regular condom use with intercourse may also help the risk of recurrent Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), Chronic Pelvic Pain (CPP), and Infertility. According to the 2004 study by Ness, Randall, Richter, et al., consistent condom users had 50% reduced risk for recurrence of PID, 30% reduced risk for chronic pelvic pain, and 60% reduced risk for infertility due to PID.

What is pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)?

Pelvic inflammatory disease is an infection-induced inflammation of the upper reproductive tract (the endometrium, fallopian tubes, ovaries, or pelvic peritoneum) of the female anatomy. In general, inflammation spreads from the vagina or cervix to the upper genital tract, endometritis is considered an intermediate stage of PID.

The way it presents can be different for different people. However, most clients with PID report pelvic tenderness and inflammation of the lower genital tract (vaginal canal, vaginal opening, and vulvar tissues).

PID is a concern because it can result in longterm reproductive issues, including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain.

What causes pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)?

PID occurs when certain bacteria, such as chlamydia or gonorrhea, move upward from a woman's vagina or cervix into her reproductive organs. The most common bacteria are two sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), gonorrhea and Chlamydia. But, other types of bacteria that are usually found in the vagina may also cause PID.

Once you have had PID, you have a greater risk of getting it again. Again, condoms are a great way to reduce the risk of transmission of STDs, thereby reducing the risk of recurrent PID infection.

What are the signs and symptoms of pelvic inflammatory disease?

Pelvic inflammatory disease can present with a variety of symptoms that can range from subtle and mild to severe. When symptoms are present, the most common symptoms of PID are:

  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Mild pelvic pain
  • Increased vaginal discharge
  • Irregular menstrual bleeding
  • Fever (>38° C)
  • Pain with intercourse
  • Painful and frequent urination
  • Abdominal tenderness
  • Pelvic organ tenderness
  • Uterine tenderness
  • Cervical motion tenderness
  • Inflammation

Pelvic Floor Therapy and PID

If you have PID, Pelvic Floor Therapy can reduce the symptoms associated with the disease including pain with intercourse, pelvic pain, frequency of urination, and tenderness throughout the body. These treatments would begin after the active infection is cleared and may include:

  • Dilator therapy to help with pain with penetration
  • Exercises for pelvic muscles to lower pain, improve bladder retention, improve bowel function, and increase the flow of blood to the area
  • Manual therapy to address tenderness and congestion in the abdomen, pelvis, and neck.
  • Therapeutic yoga to improve lymphatic drainage and reduce chronic pain
  • Neuromuscular re-education and autogenic relaxation to reduce chronic muscle over-activity, reduce pain, and improve sleep

Looking for help with recurrent pelvic inflammatory disease? Schedule an appointment with one of our therapists today!

 

Resources

Ness, R. B., Randall, H., Richter, H. E., Peipert, J. F., Montagno, A., Soper, D. E., … for the Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Evaluation and Clinical Health Study Investigators. (2004). Condom Use and the Risk of Recurrent Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, Chronic Pelvic Pain, or Infertility Following an Episode of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. American Journal of Public Health, 94(8), 1327–1329.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1448448/

Oakeschott, P, Kerry S, Aghaizu A, et al. Randomized controlled trial of screening for Chlamydia trachomatis to prevent pelvic inflammatory disease: the POPI (prevention of pelvic infection) trial. BMJ. 2010;340:c1642.

Scholes D, Stergachis A, Heidrich FE, et al. Prevention of pelvic inflammatory disease by screening for cervical chlamydial infection. N Engl J Med. 1996;334:1362–1366. 13.

World Health Organization (WHO) Department of Reproductive Health and Research, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health/Center for Communication Programs (CCP). Knowledge for health project. Family planning: a global handbook for providers (2011 update). Baltimore, MD; Geneva, Switzerland: CCP and WHO; 2011; and Trussell J. Contraceptive failure in the United States. Contraception 2011;83:397–404. https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/contraception/index.htm

**This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor.**

What Our Patients Have to Say

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Testimonial by S.S., age 54

Heather is the best! I saw her today for terrible hip/groin pain. I was so impressed with the safety measures in place and felt completely safe . Thanks for the healing hands.

S.S., age 54

Testimonial by R.H.

No one could tell me why I was having pain during sex--sharp pain, not just uncomfortable, pain. I was referred to Heather Jeffcoat after researching several different options. I had seen a specialist who told me physical therapy would not help and my only option was surgery. I really didn't want to go that route, so when we got a referral, I decided to try it--it can't hurt, I thought. I am so glad I did. She diagnosed the problem right away, which was a relief in itself.

To know why I was having pain eased my mind immensely. And to hear that she could fix it without surgery was another relief. She said she could fix the problem in 6 weeks. I think it was actually 4 for me. She was very methodical, and treated me as an intelligent human being capable of participating in my own recovery. I would absolutely recommend her to anyone. She did not try to prolong my session numbers, she worked hard to accommodate my schedule (and the fact that I had to bring a baby to sessions), and she was completely honest the entire time. It is so hard to find someone with these characteristics, much less a professional who is so good at what she does. She has my highest respect.

-- R.H.

Testimonial by R.D., age 38

"I had a severe tear during childbirth that was not stitched together correctly and therefore healed poorly. Even after having a surgery a year later to remove the scar tissue, I was still having pain, and no one could explain why -- there was no overt 'reason' to explain the pain. I had tried other 'specialists' and even saw another physical therapist who had me do hip / leg stretches -- what a joke! I was about to give up and just 'live with it' until thankfully I kept searching online and found Heather.

Read more: Testimonial by R.D., age 38

Testimonial by M.N., age 28

A personal journey and testimonial from one of my patients:

I was diagnosed with vaginismus 4 years ago. I never heard of such medical condition until after I got married. At first my husband and I didn't know what to do, we didn't know what the issues were or how to overcome it. Being born and raised in Armenia and being Christian I wasn't that open about talking to sex with others and so it wasn't easy to seek help. But eventually I went to an Ob-Gyn and luckily she knew about the medical condition (not many doctors know). She referred me to a physical therapist and I couldn't believe it and thought it's something I can handle myself. I ordered a kit from vaginismus.com and started practicing with dilators. There was some small progress but wasn't much helpful.

Read more: Testimonial by M.N., age 28

Testimonial by S.H., age 24

I just wanted to thank you for everything you've done for me for the past 19 months. I literally could not have reached my goals without you and your practice. You gave me the courage to keep moving forth with my treatment no matter how afraid and anxious I was. You were always there to answer questions and made this whole process so much easier than I expected it to be.

It's because of you that my marriage is on the right track, that I can get pregnant and that this part of my life is finally over. I really feel that Fusion Wellness is a team of people you can call family and are there to root for you and cheer you on until you reach your goals. There is nothing better than knowing I accomplished this with you guys by my side and as calmly and patiently as I needed. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for always being there and helping me reach my goals.

S.H., age 24

Testimonial by Jackie W.

I was in multiple car accidents a decade ago, and I have been to many physical therapists through the years without success. They found the root of my lower back pain problems and after nearly a decade of barely being able to walk I finally can again without pain. They are also the best pelvic floor pts and the only ones who found the connection between my pelvic floor and lower back problems. If you need help with physical pain, they are your answer.

-- Jackie W., 1/19/17 via Yelp!

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