Intrinsic Physical Therapy

Chronic Illness Pelvic Heatlh Persistent Pain

The Trifecta (hEDS, POTS and MCAS) and Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

Do you suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction such as pelvic pain, bladder pain, interstitial cystitis, painful sex, constipation, diarrhea, bloating, urinary or fecal incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse?

hEDS, POTS and MCAS can play a big role in pelvic floor conditions and treating these symptoms often require a holistic approach that not only treats the pelvic floor, but also the entire system.

Let’s dive into each condition and the potential pelvic health concerns that may be related to it.

hEDS is a connective tissue disorder that causes joint hypermobility due to ligamentous laxity. We often see pelvic floor muscle tightness as the muscles are working so hard to stabilize the core, sacroiliac joint instability/pain due to ligament laxity at the pelvis, pelvic organ prolapse due to laxity of the ligaments holding these organs in place, poor wound healing following surgery or child birth and a greater propensity for anal fissures. hEDS also results in slowed gastric motility, which can contribute to constipation and bloating. 

With MCAS, we have overactive mast cells causing an overreaction to stimuli. Remember, those mast cells are there to protect you, but in some people, they become unregulated and start to react to seemingly everything. The mast cells line our tissues that interact with our outside environment so think: mouth, sinuses, esophagus, lungs, GI tract, bowel and bladder. 

For this reason, we often see GI discomfort, alternating constipation/diarrhea, pelvic pain, and interstitial cystitis when MCAS is present. 

POTS is a disorder of the autonomic nervous system, which is the system that controls the automatic functions of our body, such as heart rate, body temperature and blood pressure. The autonomic nervous system also controls bowel and bladder function! POTS is known to cause constipation and bloating and may contribute to pelvic pain.

Due to the connection between the immune system and autonomic nervous system that we see with the trifecta, hormones can also be affected. Hormone dysregulation can also contribute to bowel and bladder dysfunction including pain, incontinence, prolapse and constipation.

If you are looking for guidance to help treat pelvic floor dysfunction, Intrinsic PT offers in-person pelvic health treatment as well as virtual consults!

Schedule a free discovery call!



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