A recent case report in the Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy outlined the case of 47 year old male with chronic pelvic pain/epididmmitis. This man could not sit or stand more then 15 minutes without increased pain which limited all of his functional movement and activiites of daily living. His treatment focused on internal and external myofascial release, postural changes, lifestyle education and stress management. The outcome was positive with the client being able to achieve significantly lower pain levels by the end of therapy and 6 months later.
Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (CPPS) is reported to affect 2-10% of men worldwide. This condition has been found to be both difficult to diagnose and treat. In men, the term chronic pelvic pain and and chronic prostatitis are often used interchangeably. Symptoms include: pain, difficulty voiding, sexual dysfunction and depression. All of which obviously affect the quality of life. Sexual dysfunction includes pain with ejaculation, ED, testicular pain.
CPPS is not limited to men and has been commonly treated within the female population. The complex nature of the female pelvis which is affected by hormonal changes, pregnancy and child birth, have made this condition relatively common.
Myofascial Release is a technique where a gentle force is applied directly to a tightened area for a sustained time period. We describe it as a low load, long duration hold. This technique has been found to be extremely effective for restoring proper hydration and mobility to tightened areas thereby relieving pain and restoring function. Myofascial Release directly affects and restores proper mobility to connective tissue, which is the most abundant tissue in the body and runs continuously from head to toe without interruption. Regular massage and soft tissue techniques do not affect connective tissue, which covers every muscle, tendon, nerve, blood vessel, all the way down to the cellular level. It is said to be the immediate environment of the cell. Myofascial Release is effective for relieving pain where other techniques fail.
In CPPS, there tends to be an area of heightened muscle tension as well as weakness. Typical treatments will address the weakness with exercise and not address the increased muscle tension. This is a major flaw as the exercise will most often increase the tension in the already over tightened areas which causes an increase in an already painful area. Myofascial Release gets to the source of the problem. It increases the mobility of the tightened areas, restores proper blood flow and mobility and function.
A common secondary problem associated with pain is the compensations that we make in our movement and lifestyle to accommodate the pain and just keep going. Over time, we forget what normal movement is. We call that body amnesia or movement amnesia. Myofasical Release helps bring awareness to these tightened, restricted areas. This increased awareness is a key factor in changing the pain long term vs short term. Movement reeducation is an important component to myofascial release treatments to restore proper movement patterns.
If you are dealing with CPPS or pain anywhere in your body that is affecting your lifestyle, you owe it to yourself to try Myofascial Release.
Do you have a story about chronic pelvic pain that you want to share? Share your story and let’s help spread the word.
Jody Hendryx, PT
For more information: www.verdevalleymfr.com