Pelvic Pain Tests And Treatments
In trying to discover the source of your pelvic pain, your doctor will give you a pelvic exam and may also have you keep a pain journal. Another good source of information comes from test results. Your doctor may want to do imaging studies or have you undergo other procedures to pinpoint the reason for your pain. Here are some of the tests your doctor may order:
*Ultrasound—this test involves bouncing sound waves off your internal organs which serves to produce an image you can see on a screen.
*Cystoscopy—in this test a thin metal tube containing a lens and a light helps to obtain an interior view of the inside of your bladder and urethra.
*Laparoscopy—this surgical procedure involves inserting a thin instrument that transmits light and is called a laparascope into your pelvic area in order to view your pelvic organs or to perform surgery.
*Colonoscopy—a lighted instrument is used to examine the length of the colon.
*Sigmoidoscopy—in this test, a thin viewing device helps a clinician examine the lower colon and the rectum for signs of cancer.
*Computed Tomography (CT)—this type of x-ray gives a more detailed image of the interior of the body.
*Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)—yet another image-producing technology which employs a magnetic field.
*Intravenous Pyelography (IVP)—this is an x-ray that is taken after a fluid is injected into the veins and then excreted through the kidneys.
*Barium Enema—barium solution is administered through the rectum and helps to highlight colon issues during an x-ray.
If the doctor can determine the cause of your pelvic pain, he will decide on a treatment plan. If the cause of your pain remains a mystery, he should still be able to advise you about means that might help counter or manage your pain.
If the problem stems from an infection, medication such as antibiotics will be prescribed. If the issue is severe menstrual cramps, pain medications may be helpful, though sometimes hormone treatment will be necessary to alleviate the pain. Birth control pills are a popular treatment for the pain of severe menstrual cramps.
Hormones can sometimes be helpful for shrinking growths like those found with endometriosis or from fibroids. However, once you stop taking the treatment, your symptoms will likely return.
Some women have found that antidepressants worked like a charm for their pelvic pain. These may be given alone or in conjunction with other treatments.
In other cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the problem causing your pelvic pain. This may be minor outpatient surgery, or major abdominal surgery. The type of surgery the patient needs depends on the exact nature of the problem.
Other therapeutic measures may include physical therapy, heat therapy, mental exercises, muscle relaxants, or nerve blocks. Adopting better posture and regular workouts may also alleviate the pain.