Pelvic pain is pain in the lowest part of the stomach area and pelvis. It may be a symptom of infection or may arise from pain in the pelvic bone or in non-reproductive internal organs, such as the bladder or colon. In women, however, pelvic pain can very well be an indication that there may be a problem with one of the reproductive organs in the pelvic area (uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, cervix, or vagina).It affects the lowest part of the abdomen, between the belly button and groin.This article looks at causes, symptoms and treatment of Pelvic pain.
WHAT COULD BE CAUSING PAIN IN PELVIS AS A WOMEN?
Menstrual cramping is a common cause of pelvic pain.It typically occurs immediately before a person starts their period, as the uterus contracts and sheds its lining. The pain may feel similar to a muscle spasm or a jabbing pain.
If an individual feels a painful sensation on one side of their pelvis in the middle of their menstrual cycle, they may be experiencing “mittelschmerz”. Doctors use this German word to describe painful ovulation.
When a person ovulates, the ovaries release an egg and some other fluid. The egg will then travel down the fallopian tube and into the uterus. The fluid released by the ovary can also enter the abdominal cavity and pelvis, which can cause irritation.
The discomfort may last for minutes or hours, and it may switch sides of the body, depending on which ovary released the egg. The pain is temporary and requires no specific treatment.
Cystitis refers to inflammation in the bladder due to a bacterial infection. This happens because vaginal, rectal, or skin bacteria can enter the urethra, a tube that drains urine from the bladder, and travel to the bladder.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) can occur anywhere in the urinary system, while cystitis occurs only in the bladder.
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is an infection in the womb that can damage the surrounding tissue. PID can arise if bacteria from the vagina or cervix enter the womb (uterus) and take hold.
PID is usually a complication of an STI, such as gonorrhea or chlamydia. Females may experience other symptoms along with pelvic pain, including abnormal vaginal discharge and bleeding.
Treatment typically involves taking antibiotics to treat the bacterial infection. However, they cannot treat scarring, so early treatment is crucial. Scarring typically occurs within the pelvic organs due to recurrent or untreated infections causing PID.
Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to the endometrium, or tissue that lines the inside of the uterus, grows outside of the womb. This study finds that race and ethnicity appear to play a role in the prevalence of endometriosis. However, there is limited literature examining the influence of race and ethnicity on the symptoms of endometriosis or access to healthcare and response.
Endometriosis can cause chronic, prolonged pelvic pain in some females. When a person’s period begins, the tissue outside of the uterus responds to hormonal changes, which may cause bleeding and inflammation in the pelvis.
Some people may experience mild to severe pain. Endometriosis may make it difficult for some women to become pregnant.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a gut disorder that causes pain and symptoms, including constipation, diarrhea, and bloating.
IBS symptoms tend to flare up and go away over time, especially after a bowel movement. There is no cure for IBS, so treatment focuses on managing symptoms through changes in diet, stress levels, and medications.
Appendicitis is inflammation in the appendix, which is a small organ in the lower-right abdomen. An infection causes this condition, and, although common, it can be severe.
Stones in the urinary tract consist of salts and minerals, such as calcium, that the body has trouble getting rid of in the urine.
These minerals can build up and form crystals in the bladder or kidneys that often cause pain in the pelvis or lower back. Stones may also cause the urine to change color, often turning it pink or reddish with blood. Sometimes, a doctor may recommend medications to break up stones or surgery to remove them.
Ovarian cysts occur when the ovaries fail to release an egg. The follicle holding the egg may not open entirely or become clogged with fluid.
When this happens, a growth called a cyst forms in the area, which may cause bloating, pressure, or pelvic pain on the side of the body with the cyst. Doctors can identify ovarian cysts using ultrasound, and they may recommend treatments that range from watchful waiting to surgery.
In rare cases, a malignant growth in the reproductive system, urinary tract, or gastrointestinal system may be the reason for pain in the pelvis. The tumour may also cause other symptoms, depending on where it appears.
Doctors will perform a thorough evaluation, often using blood and imaging tests, to identify a tumour. Once they have diagnosed the issue, they will recommend possible treatments.
Some conditions that cause pelvic pain may be due to conditions specific to the male reproductive system such as-
Prostatitis refers to inflammation and swelling of the prostate gland. Bacterial prostatitis is an infection of the gland caused by bacteria. Along with pelvic pain, symptoms can include:
If you have long-term pelvic pain with no infection or other obvious cause, you will likely receive a diagnosis of chronic pelvic pain syndrome. To qualify for this diagnosis, you need to have had pelvic pain for at least 3 months. People with this condition have pain in the penis, testicles, the area between the testicles and rectum (perineum), and lower belly.
Other symptoms include:
The urethra is the tube that urine passes through from the bladder out of the body. Urethral stricture refers to a narrowing or blockage in the urethra caused by swelling, injury, or infection. The blockage slows the flow of urine out of the penis. Symptoms of urethral stricture include pain in the abdomen and:
Temporary and mild pelvic pain is probably nothing to worry about. If the pain is severe or continues for more than several days, make an appointment with a doctor. QMe offers packages support for various medical services and features automated billing to ensure transparent and hassle-free financial transactions. Embracing QMe empowers hospitals to enhance patient experiences, optimize healthcare workflows, and deliver top-notch medical services.
Treatment of pelvic pain involves a comprehensive approach, addressing the underlying cause and providing symptom relief. Here’s a more detailed overview of potential treatments:
The first step is to visit a healthcare professional for a thorough medical evaluation. They will take a detailed medical history, perform a physical examination, and may order diagnostic tests, such as imaging or lab work, to identify the cause of the pelvic
Depending on the diagnosis, different medications may be prescribed to manage pelvic pain. These can include:
Pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain medications (e.g., acetaminophen, ibuprofen) or prescription-strength drugs to alleviate pain and inflammation.
Hormonal therapy: For conditions like endometriosis or certain menstrual disorders, hormonal medications may be used to regulate hormone levels and reduce pain.
Antibiotics: If pelvic pain is caused by an infection, antibiotics may be prescribed to treat the underlying infection.
Pelvic floor physical therapy can be beneficial for certain types of pelvic pain. Specially trained physical therapists can help improve muscle strength, flexibility, and function in the pelvic region, potentially reducing pain and discomfort.
Adopting certain lifestyle modifications can also contribute to pain management. For instance:
Dietary changes: Avoiding trigger foods that may exacerbate pelvic pain, especially in conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Stress management: Techniques like yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises may help alleviate pelvic pain related to tension and stress.
In some cases, surgical procedures may be necessary to address the underlying cause of pelvic pain. Conditions such as endometriosis, fibroids, ovarian cysts, or certain reproductive organ issues might require surgical intervention.
Counseling or Psychotherapy: For cases where pelvic pain is linked to psychological factors like anxiety or depression, counseling or psychotherapy can be beneficial in managing the pain.
Complementary and Alternative Therapies:
Some people find relief from pelvic pain through complementary treatments, such as acupuncture, chiropractic care, or herbal supplements. However, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare provider before trying these methods.
It’s important to remember that pelvic pain can be complex, and its management may require a multidisciplinary approach involving various healthcare specialists.
Always consult a qualified healthcare professional to receive an accurate diagnosis and personalised treatment plan for your specific situation. They can help determine the most appropriate course of action based on your medical history, symptoms, and test results.
Additionally, QMe offers packages support for various medical services and features automated billing to ensure transparent and hassle-free financial transactions. Embracing QMe empowers hospitals to enhance patient experiences, optimize healthcare workflows, and deliver top-notch medical services.
Pelvic pain can’t always be prevented. However, incorporating these recommendations into your daily life can help reduce your risk:
Visit your healthcare provider regularly. Routine examinations can help your medical team detect issues early on before they worsen.QMe is a cutting-edge hospital management software designed to revolutionize healthcare facilities worldwide. With its intelligent queue-based OPD management system, patients experience reduced waiting times and optimized appointment scheduling. The software’s comprehensive patient history and electronic health records ensure seamless access to critical medical information, enabling healthcare professionals to make informed decisions and provide personalized care. QMe’s automatic workflows streamline administrative tasks and treatment plans, enhancing overall efficiency and reducing human errors.