Chronic Pelvic Pain Persisting after Childbirth Diagnosis and Implications for Treatment
Sammanfattning: Objectives: To explore the pain mechanism and the origin of the pain and to evaluate a short-term pain relief treatment in women suffering from CPP persisting after childbirth in order to enable physiotherapeutic intervention.Material and methods: Thirty-six parous women with chronic pelvic pain persisting after childbirth were recruited at the Department of Physiotherapy, SundsvallHospital and by advertisements in newspapers and 29 parous women without chronic pelvic pain were recruited from an organized gynaecological screening at a midwifery surgery. All women were provoked by intra-pelvic palpation of 13 predetermined intra-pelvic landmarks. The provoked pain distribution was expressed in pain drawings and the pain intensity verbally on a Likert scale.Also, in a randomised controlled trial the 36 women with chronic pelvic pain were allocated to bilateral injection treatment with either triamcinolone or saline solutions, given once on the ischial spine with follow-up after four weeks.Results: Referred pain provoked on intra-pelvic landmarks follows a specific pattern. In general, pain provoked by palpation of the posterior intra-pelvic landmarks was mostly referred to the sacral region and pain provoked by palpation of the ischial and pubic bones was mostly referred to the groin and pubic regions. In women with chronic pelvic pain the provoked pain distribution area and pain intensity were magnified as compared to women without chronic pelvic pain.In the clinical trial decreased pain intensity, decreased distribution of pain and improved physical function was achieved among the triamcinolone treatment group as compared to the saline treatment group. Also, a positive correlation was shown between reduced pain intensity and improved function.Conclusions: Referred pain patterns provoked on intra-pelvic landmarks in women with chronic pelvic pain persisting after childbirth are consistent with sclerotomal sensory innervations and indicates allodynia and central sensitisation. This suggests that pain mapping can be used to evaluate and confirm the pain experience and contribute to diagnosis. Also, the pain intensity provoked by stimulation of the intra-pelvic landmarks is suggested to be useful to differentiate women with chronic pelvic pain from those without. Corticosteroid treatment to the ischial spine resulted in decreased pain and increased function.
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