Munson Health
 
Chronic Pelvic Pain

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by Kellicker PG

(Pelvic Pain, Chronic)

 

Causes

Chronic pelvic pain can be caused by a wide variety of conditions.
  • Psychological conditions, such as depression, or a history of physical or sexual abuse
  • Neuromuscular conditions
    • Pudendal neuralgia
    • Muscle pain
    • Nerve pain
    • Lower back pain
    • Joint and bone pain
    • Muscle strain
 

Diagnosis

Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. You may be asked to keep a pain journal to help your doctor diagnose the pain. You will be asked to write down when your pain occurs, how it feels, and how long it lasts. Your doctor may recommend tests to confirm or rule out specific diagnoses.
Tests may include:
Imaging tests to see inside body structures:
 

Treatment

Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. Options include:

Medications

Chronic pelvic pain is treated based on what caused it:
  • Antibiotics if an infection is present or possible
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to treat pain and reduce inflammation
  • Opioid pain relievers
  • Antidepressants
  • Antiseizure medications
  • Birth control pills

Complementary Therapies

The following have been used to treat pelvic pain:
The following have been used to treat pelvic pain:

Interventional Approaches

In some cases interventional approaches, including nerve blocks, may be used.

Psychological Counseling

Managing stress through counseling is helpful to many women with chronic pelvic pain.

Surgery

There are numerous causes of pelvic pain. Many are treated with surgery. The type of surgery depends upon the specific problem.
 

RESOURCES

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
http://www.acog.org

The International Pelvic Pain Society
http://www.pelvicpain.org

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Health Canada
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca

The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada
http://www.sogc.org

 

References


Chronic pelvic pain. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/chronic-pelvic-pain.html. Updated January 2011. Accessed June 11, 2013.


Chronic pelvic pain. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at: http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq099.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20130611T1540053024. Accessed June 11, 2013.


Chronic pelvic pain. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php. Updated June 7, 2012. Accessed June 11, 2013.


Chronic pelvic pain. The International Pelvic Pain Society website. Available at: http://www.pelvicpain.org/pdf/Patients/CPP%5FPt%5FEd%5FBooklet.pdf. Accessed June 11, 2013.


Levy BS. The complex nature of chronic pelvic pain. J Fam Pract. 2007 Mar;56(3 Suppl Diagnosis):S16-17.


Reiter RC. Evidence-based management of chronic pelvic pain. Clin Obstet Gynecol. 1998;41(2):422-435.

 

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