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vaginal mesh is link putting a chain link fence in your vagina - ouch!

“The cure is worse than the disease."

We’ve all heard the cautionary proverb; but to someone desperate for a cure, it’s all too easy to ignore.

Sadly, that’s been the outcome of too many vaginal mesh surgery cases. It’s a popular treatment for stress urinary incontinence, among other conditions; but many of these patients have paid a heavy price. Increasingly, women are opting to have the mesh surgically removed; and some of them are further devastated to learn that one of the most common complications – pelvic pain – can persist long after the mesh is gone.

But there’s good news for those women from a group of researchers in the Lone Star state. Their findings, detailed in a recent report in the Journal Of Women’s Health Physical Therapy, suggest that pelvic floor physical therapy is effective in treating and reducing that post-surgical pain.

The concept and procedure for the original surgery are fairly simple – a synthetic mesh sling is implanted to help support the bladder and other pelvic organs – and it can be successful in treating some cases. But all too often, patients end up suffering from complications including the following:

  • Scar tissue
  • Infection
  • Mesh contraction

It all adds up to pelvic pain and painful sex.

A team at the University of Texas-Southwestern Medical Center recruited a group of women who experienced pelvic pain that became chronic, even after they elected to have their vaginal mesh or mesh slings surgically removed. Each woman was referred to a qualified pelvic floor therapist for treatment, patient education, and a supervised follow up home exercise program.

The researchers tracked their progress over five years. The findings? Fifty percent of the women who participated in both the physical therapy sessions and the home exercise sessions saw a marked decrease in their overall pelvic pain. (A few patients with severe pelvic pain were also prescribed a series of injections to relax the pelvic floor, aiding the physical therapy sessions.) Even better news – the women in the study who experienced pain only with sexual activity achieved more than 80% improvement!

If vaginal mesh surgery - or surgical removal - have left you with pelvic pain, the Femina Physical Therapy team can help decrease your pain and increase your quality of life again; no more surgery needed.

And if you’re contemplating vaginal mesh surgery, schedule a consultation with us first. We’ve successfully treated hundreds of women who thought surgery was their only option.

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What Our Patients Have to Say

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Testimonial by T.C.

While pregnant with my twins, Heather took care with keeping me on my feet and pain free. She saved my back, my sanity and the holidays! I would recommend her to every “mom” looking to stay on her feet during pregnancy and post-partum.

-- T.C.

Testimonial by M.M.

A personal journey and testimonial from one of my patients:

My husband and I were married for 5 years before we were able to have intercourse due to my vaginismus. There was nothing traumatic in my past but for some reason, even though I wanted sex, I mentally avoided "that area" of my body and didn't even admit to myself that there was a problem for a long time, even though I was never able to put tampons in. Once I finally opened my eyes up to the fact that I had a problem, I had a surgery that was supposed to fix the issue.

Read more: Testimonial by M.M.

Testimonial by Amanda W.

Heather's unique physical therapy program literally changed my life! After years of struggling with vaginismus, a condition that made it impossible for me to have intercourse and very difficult to use tampons without pain, a gynecologist referred me to Heather. I was nervous for my first appointment, but Heather's professional and friendly demeanor put me at ease. She did a great job explaining each technique she was using to help my muscles relax. Heather uses a combination of internal and external stretches and exercises to relax the pelvic floor and build muscle strength. Her specially developed home program helped me quickly recover from an issue that seemed insurmountable before meeting Heather. She was optimistic about my progress and incredibly encouraging. Less than 6 months after my first session, I was able to have pain-free sex for the first time in my life! If you are suffering from vaginismus or any other pelvic floor issues, I highly recommend making an appointment with Heather and reading her book!

-- Amanda W., 2/15/16 via Yelp!

Testimonial by S.P., Age 26

I would like to start off by thanking Heather Jeffcoat for educating me and curing me of Vaginismus. I had been married for almost three years before I was referred to Heather. I never knew about Vaginismus until almost three years into my marriage. I knew something was wrong when I went on my honeymoon and came back a Virgin. I had always imagined how magical my first night would be but boy was I wrong.

Read more: Testimonial by S.P., Age 26

Testimonial by J.B.

My husband and I were having problems with painful intercourse. My therapist recommended that I go and get a pelvic floor evaluation from a physical therapist. Having never been treated by a physical therapist, I wondered how this really was going to help me. My husband who is a physician was very supportive and agreed that a PT evaluation would be a great idea. So i made the appointment and was blown away by what I learned. I had no idea that pelvic floor muscles could get tight and have trigger points just like any other muscle in the body. I'm a massage therapist and very familiar with tight muscles, and this new thought really amazed me. Heather's program to help relax and strengthen these muscles made such a difference. I can say that I am 100% pain free during intercourse now. Yippee! Going to the PT appointments and doing the at-home exercises was definitely a discipline, but it's 100% worth it! The rewards are amazing.

-- J.B.

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

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