Pelvic Floor Muscle Training, or PFMT, is a non-invasive, painless treatment option for a wide range of bladder issues, which comes with a 70-80 percent success rate of significantly improving symptoms and has no side effects. PFMT re-educates and tones the muscles in the pelvic floor, which in turn can positively affect general bladder function.
Who benefits from PFMT?
Bladder and pelvic issues affect millions of Americans. Bladder dysfunction is more common in menopausal women due to hormonal changes and aging bladder muscles, and in pregnant and post-partum women because of hormonal changes and stress associated with pregnancy and childbirth. In Europe, the standard of care for every postpartum mom is to receive pelvic floor strengthening therapy after she delivers a baby. The goal is to strengthen and rehabilitate the muscles of the pelvic floor thereby reducing the occurrence of postpartum incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse and to also help restore sexual function.
Both the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the American Urogynecology Society recommend pelvic exercise as the standard of care for common types of incontinence. We are excited to be able to offer this program to our patients in the comfort and convenience of our office.
PFMT is indicated for the following conditions:
• Stress incontinence
• Urge incontinence
• Urinary frequency
• Interstitial cystitis
• Chronic pelvic pain
• Overactive bladder
• Frequent nighttime urination
• Fecal incontinence
• Chronic constipation
• Rectal pain
• Pelvic floor relaxation
• Painful sexual intercourse
Our goal is to return our patients to a life of health, wellness, and independence. We will, after a complete history and examination, diagnose the type and cause of your particular problem and discuss the treatment best suited to you.
Take the Pelvic Health Quiz
What is PFMT?
This therapy combines a personalized home exercise program with office treatment. The patient is instructed on how to perform home exercises. Pelvic floor stimulation is then performed in our office with a vaginal and/or rectal sensor. A mild electrical stimulus is used to stimulate pelvic muscles and causes a comfortable, timed contraction of the pelvic floor muscles. This will feel like a gentle tapping sensation and you will feel the muscle contract. Stimulation aids in muscle re-education and strengthening and decreased muscle spasms associated with pelvic problems.
The office evaluation consists of a visit with our specially trained RN and will take approximately 1 hour. The nurse will take a health history and perform an examination to evaluate the cause of your problem. Dietary habits will also be reviewed. Some patients have bladders that are very sensitive to certain types of drinks and food. Dietary changes may be recommended. If you have not recently had a urine test performed you should come expecting to give a specimen.
How often will I need this treatment?
After your initial visit you will be asked to return to the office for intermittent pelvic floor stimulation treatments. These visits will take approximately 30 minutes. A positive change in your symptoms should be noticed in 3 to 4 treatments if this therapy is going to be successful for you. We recommend appointments every 1 to 2 weeks initially depending on your symptoms and progress. The average number of visits required to complete treatment is 9.
Is there any preparation for this treatment?
No preparation is required for this treatment.
How can I learn more about PFMT?
Covered by most insurance plans, PFMT restores patients’ health, confidence, and independence. For more information about bladder dysfunction and treatment options like PFMT, talk to your doctor or call Austin Area OB/GYN’s benefits specialist 512-533-4113.
Patients are also encouraged to fill out a Bladder Satisfaction Survey and a Daily Bladder Diary prior to the first office visit, to help physicians evaluate the cause of, and form a treatment plan for each patient’s specific problem.
You can also learn more about the therapy by reviewing our brochure here.