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Physical, Complementary, and Alternative Medicine in the Treatment of Pelvic Floor Disorders

Pelvic floor disorders encompass abnormalities of urination, defecation, sexual function, pelvic organ prolapse, and chronic pain, and can have significant quality of life implications for patients. Current guidelines recommend behavioral modifications and conservative treatments as first-line therapy for pelvic floor disorders. We have reviewed the literature for articles published on physical, complementary, and alternative treatments for pelvic floor disorders over the past 5 years. Review of pelvic floor muscle physiotherapy (PFMT) and biofeedback (BF) shows a benefit for patients suffering from bladder dysfunction (incontinence, overactive bladder), bowel dysfunction (constipation, fecal incontinence), pelvic organ prolapse, and sexual dysfunction (pelvic pain). Combination of PFMT and BF has shown improved results compared to PFMT alone, and some studies find that electrical stimulation can augment the benefit of BF and PFMT. Additionally, acupuncture and cognitive behavioral therapy has shown to be an effective treatment for pelvic floor disorders, particularly with respect to pelvic pain. Read more here.