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Pelvic Pain: Treatment, Procedure, Cost And Side Effects

Last Updated: Feb 20, 2024

What is Pelvic Pain?

Pelvic refers to the lowest part of the pelvis and abdomen, which contains internal reproductive organs and bladder. It also provides support to the intestines. Pelvic pain is a condition which refers to the arising symptoms of urinary or digestive, reproductive and musculoskeletal sources in women. When it comes to the difference between male and female pelvis, Female pelvis is generally wider and broader than male pelvis.

Depending upon the condition, pelvic could be mild to acute. In some cases, pain is felt in the lower back, thighs, and hips also. If you feel sudden, sharp or acute pain consistently for more than six months then it becomes chronic.

What is the cause of Pelvic Pain?

There are few possible causes of pelvic pain in men and women are -

Nerve conditions, appendix, hernia, pelvis disorder, intestinal disorders, bladder disorders, sexually transmitted disease, constipation, colon cancer, kidney stones, irritable bowel syndrome, infection of prostate, injury, urinary tract infection, stress, depression, anxiety, fibroids, cervical cancer, uterine cancer, cysts, difficulty in urination, blood in urine, fatigue, pain during sex, menstrual cramps pain, pain during ovulation, fever, nausea, vaginal discharge with unusual color, bloating, heavy periods, hemorrhoids, burning sensation at vulva, psychological issues, pain in inner thighs, vulvodynia, incontinence, spotting between periods, rectal bleeding, endometriosis, infertility, adenomyosis, etc.

What are the symptoms of Pelvic Pain?

Symptoms of pelvic pain depends upon the causes, which are -

  1. Urinary tract infection - infection caused by bacteria is the reason of urinary tract infections and it could lead to infections to any part of the urinary tract such as bladder, kidneys and urethra. Its symptoms are much more common in men and women such as - blood in urine, lower back pain, incontinence, cloudy urine, burning sensation while urinating, pressure on pelvis, bad smell of urine, etc.
  2. Irritable bowel syndrome - pelvic pain could also be caused by the other factors apart from urinary tract infections. It could also took place due to intestinal condition such as - constipation, bloating, diarrhea, incontinence, etc.
  3. Fibroids - these are non cancerous tumors that grow on the uterus walls. Its symptoms include - hemorrhoids, heavy periods, frequent urination, menstrual cramps, constipation, etc.
  4. Vulvodynia - it is a pain that affects vulva. In it patient may feel burning sensations in the vulva, inner thighs pain, pain during sexual intercourse, etc.
  5. Psychological issues - for some people it is a psychological issues, which took place due to anxiety, stress, depression and physical abuse also.
  6. Pelvic spasm - it is due to spasm of pelvic muscle, which may include pain related to sitting or you may wake up at night due to pain. This condition is also called levator syndrome.
  7. Pelvic congestion syndrome - this condition lead to chronic pain in few womens and its symptoms may include, worse pelvic pain when you sit or stand, lower back pain, pain during sex, leg spasm, pain starts before 7-10 days before menstrual periods.

How do I get rid of pelvic pain?

To get rid of pelvic pain you can do following things which can improve quality of life as well as reduces symptoms. One must visit to the doctor and discuss all his problems, depending upon the cause doctor may recommend you medications such as -

  1. Pain relievers - these medicines include aspirin or acetaminophen, which provides partial relief from pelvic pain.
  2. Antibiotics - in case of infection doctor might prescribe you an antibiotic. It helps in reduce the infection.
  3. Hormone treatment - some women find that they have pelvic pain during specific phase of menstrual cycle. Which could be hormonal change, in such case contraception pills and other hormonal treatment may help in reducing the pain.

Apart from that there are other therapies such as physical therapy, psychotherapy, spinal cord stimulation and trigger point injections can help in relieving from pain. While in severe cases doctor might also suggest you with surgery such as hysterectomy and laparoscopic surgery.

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What can cause pelvic pain in a female?

There are many causes of pelvic pain in females, which include -

  1. Pelvic congestion syndrome - this condition lead to chronic pain in few womens and its symptoms may include, worse pelvic pain when you sit or stand, lower back pain, pain during sex, leg spasm, pain starts before 7-10 days before menstrual periods.
  2. Vulvodynia - it is a pain that affects vulva. In it patient may feel burning sensations in the vulva, inner thighs pain, pain during sexual intercourse, etc.
  3. Psychological issues - for some womens, it is a psychological issues which took place due to anxiety, stress, depression and physical abuse also.
  4. Irritable bowel syndrome - pelvic pain could also be caused by the other factors apart from urinary tract infections. It could also took place due to intestinal condition such as - constipation, bloating, diarrhea, incontinence, etc.
  5. Fibroids - these are non cancerous tumors that grow on the uterus walls. Its symptoms include - hemorrhoids, heavy periods, frequent urination, menstrual cramps, constipation, etc.

How to diagnose pelvic pain?

In a case of chronic pain doctor might ask about the history of the disease. Depending upon the symptoms might suggest few test or exam include -

  1. Lab test - To check urinary tract infections, doctor might ask for blood cell to check the blood cell counts and also ask for urinalysis, so that he/she can check for infections such as gonorrhea or chlamydia.
  2. Pelvic exam - doctor will check for areas of tenderness, this will also reveals the signs of abnormal growths, infection and tense pelvic floor muscles.
  3. CT scans or MRIs - doctor may advise you for imaging test to detect the problem.
  4. Ultrasound - it is useful to detect problems of uterus or fallopian tubes, ovarian cysts, and abnormal growths.
  5. Laparoscopy - it is a procedure in which camera is inserted with a thin tube to detect the problem. It helps doctor to detect the problem easily. It is also useful to detect inflammatory disease and endometriosis.

What are the home remedies for pelvic pain?

There are few relaxation techniques which can help in pelvic pain. Apart from that, by adopting few changes in our lifestyle, we can get rid of pelvic pain, which includes -

  1. Safe sex - make sure you are using condoms during sexual intercourse with new partner, it helps to avoid urinary tract infections and sexually transmitted disease.
  2. Acupuncture - it is a best way to heal pain. As we have different pressure points for different parts in our body. There is a pressure point for pelvic pain also, which helps from relieving symptoms of it.
  3. Exercises - in case of pelvic pain, one can also try some exercises, which strengthen the muscles in the pelvis include muscles around bladder and vagina.
  4. Not to ignore symptoms - pelvic pain can affects your health and fertility. Make sure you are not ignoring symptoms such as spotting between periods and chronic pelvic pain.

References

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Written ByDr. Jayashri S MBBS,MS - Obstetrics and GynaecologyGynaecology
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