I was recently send the article below that was just published this month. This is big information about the efficacy of pelvic floor exercise and I would argue even more so from pelvic basket strengthening. Remember there is no side effect to exercise, so use it as a first line of defense! Read below:
From Reuters Health Information
By Fran Lowry
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Sep 01 – Pelvic floor muscle training can reduce the symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, according to trial data reported in Glasgow this week at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Continence Society (ICS 2011).
“Health care professionals who see women bothered with symptoms of prolapse should counsel them to consider conservative treatment in the first instance and offer a referral for supervised PFMT,” lead author Dr. Suzanne Hagen, from Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow, Scotland, told Reuters Health.
Many physiotherapists do offer women with pelvic organ prolapse individualized pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT) but evidence of its long-term clinical benefit has been lacking.
In this multicenter randomized trial, Dr. Hagen and her team assigned 448 women with newly diagnosed prolapse of stage I, II, or III to receive either PFMT or a lifestyle advice leaflet which was sent to them in the mail. Women with stage IV prolapse, which is the most severe, were not included in the study.
The mean age in the study was 57 years. The median number of births was two, with most births (89%) being normal vaginal deliveries. Anterior prolapse was the most common type, affecting 34% of the women, followed by combined anterior/posterior prolapse (24%) and posterior prolapse alone (16%).
Most of the women (74%) had stage II prolapse, 15% had stage III, and 11% had stage I. The mean duration of prolapse symptoms was slightly more than two years.
The PFMT was delivered by a physiotherapist at five appointments over 16 weeks. At the visits, the women were taught about their pelvic floor muscles and how to exercise them. They were also given a home exercise program to follow between appointments.
“This is a similar program to that given for women with urinary incontinence, which is known to be effective,” Dr. Hagen said.
The women had follow-up visits at six and 12 months after they entered the study. The researchers found symptoms improved significantly more in the intervention group compared with controls.
The pelvic organ prolapse symptom score (POP-SS) was lower in the women who received PFMT at six months (6.56 vs. 9.17 for controls; P < 0.001) and at 12 months (5.74 vs. 7.04 for controls; P = 0.005).
The average decrease in POP-SS for the women who got PFMT was 1.52, “which represents an important change, clinically,” Dr. Hagen noted.
Additionally, women who attended all five appointments had a significant increase in contraction strength from baseline, according to the modified Oxford scale, with a mean increase of 0.6 (p
“We would hope that national evidence-based guidelines would be developed for the treatment of prolapse which would include the findings of this trial and the evidence for other treatments, such as surgery and pessaries,” Dr. Hagen said. “Also, we would hope that women can be counseled that if they wish to avoid surgery they may benefit from PFMT.”