Pelvic Pain

>> Thursday, December 4, 2014

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Good morning. I am hope you are all looking forward to this beautiful holiday season with friends and family. Unfortunately, I know many of you may be smiling and laughing in between your episodes of pelvic pain. You have become so accustomed to it and even expect it by planning your holidays around it.

Pelvic pain is located in the lowest part of your abdomen, way down about half way between your pubic bone/pubic hairline and your belly button. Any pain that is at your belly button or higher is considered abdominal pain. It can be difficult to know for sure, because pain can radiate up from the pelvis to your belly button or ribs and back pain from your spine or tailbone can wrap around to the front. And, of course, abdominal pain can radiate down from your stomach, gallbladder or kidneys into the pelvis. It can be frustrating and scary!

Depending on its source, pelvic pain may be dull or sharp; it may be constant or intermittent; and it may be mild, moderate or severe. Pelvic pain can move around to your lower back, buttocks and shoot down your vagina and thighs. Pelvic pain can occur suddenly and sharply and last for just a few minutes 3-4 times a month. You my notice that it only hurts when you have sex, go to the restroom, have your period, or ovulate (about a week to 1 ½ weeks after your period).

Pelvic pain can be so complicated that it may have nothing to do with your uterus or ovaries. It may come from the muscles and connective tissue (ligaments) in the structures of the pelvic floor. This pain may be caused by irritation of nerves in the pelvis and can hurt when you exercise or walk your dog. There is no surgery for this -- not even a Total Hysterectomy with both ovaries removed will take away this type of pain.
There are many things that can cause pelvic pain. Some are chronic (which means it is a part of how your body was made and functions and can never be cured). The occasional or acute pain will come and go and is usually caused by something curable and temporary. Most women don't have chronic pain and all women have episodes of pelvic pain during their lifetimes.

Female reproductive system related: It may be caused by female conditions like Adenomyosis, Endometriosis, Menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea), Ectopic pregnancy (or other pregnancy-related conditions), Miscarriage (before the 20th week), intrauterine fetal death, Mittelschmerz (ovulation pain), Ovarian cysts, Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or Uterine fibroids.

Pain from non female related organs: Include Appendicitis, Colon cancer, Chronic constipation, Crohn's disease, Diverticulitis, Fibromyalgia, Inguinal hernia Interstitial cystitis (also called painful bladder syndrome), Irritable bowel syndrome, Kidney stones, Past physical or sexual abuse, Pelvic floor muscle spasms, Ulcerative colitis or Urinary tract infections.

If you suddenly develop severe pelvic pain, it may be a medical emergency like a ruptured ectopic (tubal) pregnancy or a ruptured cyst that is causing internal bleeding. You should seek medical attention promptly as these are life threatening.
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