We often hear from our patients that they put off getting help because they were embarrassed. If you’re hesitant to get help, we understand. Issues like incontinence or painful sex can be difficult to talk about. But, pelvic floor issues are much more common than you think.
The National Institutes of Health reports that more than one-third of U.S. women have pelvic floor disorders, conditions caused by weakened or damaged pelvic floor muscles. Our team of board-certified urogynecologists have helped thousands of women to manage and improve their condition and we want to help you, too.
Urogynecologists are OB-GYNs who are also board certified in pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. At HealthPartners and Park Nicollet, we provide support, encouragement and skilled care to manage a variety of conditions, from recurring urinary tract infections (UTIs) to urinary or fecal incontinence. We work with you to find the best treatment so you can return to the life you love.
Our urogynecologists use the latest research and technology to treat conditions that affect the pelvic floor, including:
Bladder control issues are often called incontinence. This might mean you have an overactive bladder, where a cough, laugh or sneeze can put pressure on your pelvic floor muscles and cause leakage. Our urogynecologists treat bladder control issues and other concerns, like painful bladder syndrome.
Also called fecal incontinence, this condition causes you to lose control of bowel movements. It’s more common in women and older adults. Episodes of bowel incontinence might happen as frequently as every day or as infrequently as every month.
Many women experience pain during sex (also called dyspareunia) following childbirth, surgical treatment or trauma. Infections and hormonal imbalances can also cause sex to be painful. We’ll work together to find out what’s causing the pain and determine the best treatment option for you.
POP happens when the pelvic organs – including the bladder, uterus or rectum – drop down from where they should be. This can happen when childbirth or surgery make pelvic floor muscles weak or damaged. You might be able to see or feel a bulge, or you might experience other symptoms like pressure or fullness, back pain or pain during sex.
Chronic urinary tract infections (also called recurrent UTIs) happen when bacteria enter the urinary tract. Recurrent infections are those that do not respond to antibiotics or keep coming back. If you have two UTIs in a six-month period or three UTIs in a year, your condition is considered recurrent.
There are many types of urogynecologic and pelvic floor conditions. Because of this, there are a variety of symptoms you might notice. If you feel like anything is out of the ordinary and haven’t talked to a doctor yet, we recommend making an appointment with one of our OB-GYNs. If the help of one of our urogynecologists is needed, we will help you make an appointment. Some of the most common symptoms to watch for are:
We have a variety of methods we can use to diagnose pelvic floor disorders. During your first visit, we’ll ask questions about your symptoms and your family’s health history and do a physical exam. If we need more information to diagnose your condition, we might perform one of these additional tests:
After a diagnosis, we’ll work with you to find the best treatment options. Some of the most common treatments are:
Our physical therapists work with you to create a plan for treating your pelvic floor issues. Treatment might include an advanced sports massage technique called soft tissue release or exercises to help loosen the muscles. We may also suggest small lifestyle changes like improving your posture and changing your exercise routine to help limit pain.
Pelvic floor relaxation techniques can help get rid of muscle spasms and pelvic pain. Examples of relaxation techniques include:
Certain medications can be prescribed for overactive bladder. Your doctor will work with you to make sure that any medicine prescribed is a good fit for your health needs.
Many women who are experiencing incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse find relief through surgery. At HealthPartners and Park Nicollet, we use a variety of minimally invasive surgical methods, including da Vinci surgery, to help you find relief.
No, you can visit a urogynecologist without a referral.
If you haven’t talked with a doctor about your concerns before, it might be a good idea to talk with your primary care doctor or OB-GYN first. Both doctors can treat common concerns, like UTIs and bladder problems. With hundreds of primary care doctors and OB-GYNs, you’ll be able to find expert answers at a clinic near you. To get started, please choose a primary care doctor, OB-GYN or choose a location and call the clinic for help scheduling an appointment.
The first visit will be a consultation to determine what’s causing your symptoms and discuss treatment options. Your doctor will work with you to discuss your treatment plan and will help you schedule any follow-up appointments if necessary.
We accept most health insurance plans, including Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, CIGNA, HealthPartners, Medica, Medicare, PreferredOne and many others.
Not sure what your insurance covers? Call the number on the back of your card for help looking at your options.
Don’t have your card in front of you? Here are the member services numbers to help you get started: