In our weekly feature section, Pelvic Rehab Report is proud to present this interview with newly certified practitioner Michele Syska, PT, PRPC

Describe Your Clinic:

Orthopedic manual based.  I love figuring out how mechanical issues may be affecting the current presentation.   I would also characterize my practice as open.  I’m up for trying new ideas either from course work, other therapists or patients.  I enjoy learning from the experience of others and have an open mind to many techniques.

Continue reading

Maureen Brennan, PT, PRPC graduated from the University of Illinois at Champaign with her Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology, 2001 and then completed her degree in Physical Therapy from the Chicago campus in 2003. She achieved her Pelvic Rehabilitation Practitioner Certification in 2014.

Maureen has enjoyed treating patients at Rush University Medical Center for over a decade where she established a Women’s Health program and then expanded it to also include men and children. She is delighted to be part of the hospital’s Program for Abdominal and Pelvic Health which is a true multidisciplinary team that meets monthly to collaborate about challenging cases and offer continuing education opportunities for other health care professionals with an emphasis on the importance of teamwork.

In addition, she enjoys instructing a number of educational classes at the medical center that include prenatal education and pelvic floor health for employees and community members. She also presents talks focusing on a physical therapist’s perspective of pelvic floor dysfunction to Rush residents and physicians of neighboring hospitals.

Continue reading

Herman & Wallace is excited to announce that we will be offering a Pelvic Floor Level One course this year in Birmingham, UK!

This course will be hosted at Coventry University and taught by Michelle Lyons, PT, MISCP.? Unlike our usual PF1 courses, the Birmingham course will be a two-day event, starting on November 30th.

Continue reading

France has it right when it comes to treating the pelvic floor of postpartum women.

On Monday, The New York Times published an article, ?The Re-Education of My Perineum.?? In it, author Ruth Foxe Blader tells the story of her experience in France after giving birth.? As she tells it, her experience in France is close to ideal.? Her physical therapist, Aude, handles the reality of pelvic rehab with the professionalism that is needed:

Continue reading

It is a reality in the world of pelvic rehab that too few patients are comfortable discussing their genitalia, anus, or the functions of any pelvic organ when things are going smoothly, much less when something goes amiss.? Often, questions about them are more likely to give blushes than honest answers.

Role/Reboot, a blog that focuses on gender roles and relations, published a blog this July titled ?The Sex Education I Wish I Had.?? In it, author Marianne Cassidy catalogues some of the main problems with sexual education.? While much of the piece is a litany of ?I wishes? for sexual education, Cassidy?s piece reminds me of the wonderful ?Camp Gyno? video Pelvic Rehab Report discussed two weeks ago. ?It?s refreshing to read a blog that is both honest and to the point about perfectly normal things like menstruation and masturbation.

At the end of her litany of ?I wishes,? Cassidy drives home the ultimate point of this blog, ?Most of all, I wish I?d grown up in an environment where my peers and I felt comfortable discussing sex and asking questions, because then maybe none of the above would ever have been scary or mysterious. ?I wish we had classroom discussions about sex and exams on sex and reflective essays on sex and it was all as normal and interesting and important as algebra or poetry.?

Continue reading

The Las Vegas Guardian published an article yesterday titled, ?Pregnancy Yoga Magic,? that articulates the benefits of yoga for pregnant patients.? Yoga, the article explains, ?can be the perfect choice for helping to increase endurance little by little, as well as improving muscle strength and honing one pointed focus ? important for birth preparation.?

This article does an excellent job illustrating that, while exercise is important for everyone, pregnant women must find exercise that is effective without being harmful: ?Pre-natal yoga practices are often geared to tune women into their pelvis and the flexibility therein as well as breath control and leg strength ? all critical tools to have during labor and delivery.? Unlike walking, weight-lifting or other ?regular? exercise, pre-natal yoga is fine-tuned to specifically prepare women for the birthing experience and to empower them into the knowledge that they can do this.?

However, few moms-to-be get as much exercise as they should: ?as many as 75% of pregnant women don?t do any type of exercise.?? This means that it is critical for anyone working with pregnant patients to emphasize the how crucial of a role exercise takes for both their health and the health of the child.

Continue reading

The Border Mail, an Australian newspaper, published an article today following Brian Costello, a man who underwent a prostatectomy.? Surgery for prostate cancer often leaves patients suffering with erectile dysfunction and incontinence.? However, Brian?s physicians did not send him into outpatient rehab, leaving him and his wife Jill, ?on their own.?

The piece titled ?Sex and Secret Men?s Business,? outlines how important pelvic floor and penile rehabilitation is, as well as how few hospitals are prepared to treat outpatients who survive prostate cancer.

Brian?s wife and daughter Leah started ManUp!, an advocacy organization meant to promote better prostate care in Australia.? All too often they hear stories like Brian?s; physicians who show ?no interest in what happens to their patients after prostate cancer treatment.? One man left impotent and incontinent after his robotic surgery[, and] was told the doctor?s job was simply to deal with the cancer.?

Continue reading

Pelvic Rehabilitation is often incorrectly considered a women?s health issue. ?This is because, as this wonderful video from Aligned and WellTM demonstrates, ?childbirth often gets blamed for pelvic floor disorder.?? Male or female, hip and pelvic biomechanics play an important role in the functioning of the pelvic floor.

Tucking one?s pelvis while sitting or favoring one leg when you stand can have a tremendous effect on the strength of one?s hip and pelvic muscles.? Weakened pelvic floor muscles often correlate with or cause such common conditions as urinary/fecal incontinence and sexual dysfunction, as well as chronic lower back and pelvic pain.

However, as Jessica Powley, PT, DPT, WCS, says in a recent blog post on Pelvic Guru, "rehabilitation for the pelvis is much more involved than simply strengthening a muscle group. It involves restoring function?improving muscular support around the pelvis, improving behavioral/dietary habits, and re-training body movements to allow for optimal organ and structural function"(emphasis added). ?In short, by focusing on the biomechanics, practitioners can better educate patients on treatment.

Continue reading

The Great Falls Tribunepublished a piece Tuesday about McKenna Fromm, an eighteen-year-old girl who suffers from interstitial cystitis, pudendal neuralgia, and levator ani syndrome. Alone, each of these conditions can be debilitating, leaving patients in pain. Often each of these conditions is coupled with urinary or fecal incontinence. This piece, titled ?Great Falls Teen Fighting Three Painful Pelvic Conditions,? elucidates the struggle of patients who suffer from these conditions.

Each of these conditions is known to be difficult to diagnose, particularly interstitial cystitis which has ?[n]o specific diagnostic tests.?? Sometimes these conditions require surgery.? Other times, treatment includes ?a ?cocktail? of medications that include topical anesthesia or anti-inflammatory.?

However, one aspect of this article fails to truly emphasize is the role of physical therapy in treatment.? Stephanie Prendergast, president of the International Pelvic Pain Society, demonstrated this point well in a Facebook post about the Tuesday article.

Continue reading

Scientists at the National University of Ireland in Maynooth reported the detection of a protein, Pellino3 that may stop Crohn's disease from developing. The Irish Times article, University breakthrough in fight against Crohn's disease, described the benefit as diagnostic: [Researchers] will now use the protein as a basis for new diagnostic for Crohn's and as a target in designing drugs to treat the illness.

Researchers noticed that levels of Pellino3 are dramatically reduced in Crohn's disease patients. Prof. Paul Moynagh, who led the researchers, believes that identifying Pellino3s role in Crohn's disease may lead to better treatments for other inflammatory bowel diseases.

In the United States, more than a half-million people suffer from Crohn's disease and more than a million suffer from some type of inflammatory bowel disease. Symptoms often include abdominal pain and diarrhea. These symptoms are often debilitating and even life-threatening. There is neither a known cause nor cure for Crohn's disease.

Continue reading

All Upcoming Continuing Education Courses