Pelvic pain to be considered chronic has to last more than six months. However, the intensity and consistency may vary. It can be pain that comes and goes or constantly, and it can be a dull or mild pain but severe enough to interfere with daily activities. It is a pain that can affect both men and women of different ages. However, in the case of women, it is easier to detect a gynecological cause, and in men, it is more challenging to diagnose. However, it will require several clinical examinations in men and women to determine the cause since it is not easy to detect. The treatment will depend in each case on both the origin and the intensity of the pain. This FastlyHealarticle explains chronic pelvic pain’s causes, symptoms, and treatment.
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Symptoms of chronic pelvic pain
The pelvis is the area below the navel and above the hips. In women, pain may appear in the area during menstruation; however, it remits when it has disappeared.
When the pain lasts at least six months, even if it is not constant, it is said to be chronic pelvic pain, and you have to look for the cause that is causing it. Since it does not appear independently, it is always due to a more significant reason. It has been estimated that around 15% of women of childbearing age suffer from this ailment.
How to detect it?
The most apparent symptom of this ailment is the pain itself. However, it may be different for each person. Could be:
- Sometimes it is constant and mild in intensity.
- It can also be sharp, cramp-like.
- I continue the intermittent.
- You do not have to sit at a defined point, and you can occupy the entire pelvic region.
- Some describe it as a feeling of pressure in the pelvic area.
- Pain does not allow you to do daily activities, incapacitating the person who suffers it.
On some occasions, depending on the origin that is causing it or even due to its long duration, it can affect the central nervous system. In this way, it makes it more sensitive to stimuli.
Gynecological causes of chronic pelvic pain in women
The causes of chronic pelvic pain vary widely and require a thorough examination to determine them.
Sometimes, the cause that has caused this pain has been able to disappear, for example, an infection, but the pelvic structures have been affected and, therefore, the pain does not remit and becomes chronic.
In women, the most common causes are gynecological problems. In this way, we can find gynecological reasons that are cyclical, due to the menstrual cycle, or those that are specific.
As for cyclical gynecological causes, we can find:
- Pain from ovulation.
- Primary dysmenorrhea or pain during menstruation. There is no major cause for this pain.
- Secondary dysmenorrhea. The pain is associated with some pathology such as endometriosis, cervical stenosis, leiomyoma endometritis.
- Presence of the IUD (intrauterine device). It is a contraceptive method used by many women due to its comfort. However, it can lead to cramps that cause pelvic pain.
- Premenstrual syndrome (PMS). It is the set of symptoms that appear before menstruation, and many women suffer. Among these symptoms is a pain in the pelvis.
In these cases, pelvic pain is usually occasional, although it could become chronic, especially in the case of conditions such as endometriosis.
In the case of non-cyclical gynecological causes, the pain is due to pathologies or conditions and not to menstruation. They may be:
- Pelvic inflammatory disease. It is caused when several episodes of urinary tract infections or remnants of another state. There is pain due to adhesions, pathogens that have caused an infection, or nerve damage.
- Pelvic adhesions. They are tissue band that forms and makes two structures stick together, causing constant pain.
- Endometriosis. It is a disease characterized by endometrial tissue outside the uterus.
- Uterine malposition. It is an abnormality of the pelvic anatomy in which the uterus is tilted back instead of being tilted forward.
- Pelvic congestion syndrome. It is the presence of varicose veins in the ovaries or uterus causing pelvic pain.
- Fibroids are benign growths on the wall of the uterus.
- Ovarian remains after a complete hysterectomy, that is, removal of the uterus and ovaries. The debris could form a small, painful cyst.
Other causes of chronic pelvic pain
In addition to gynecological causes, there may be other causes of chronic pelvic pain in both men and women, such as:
- Gastrointestinal causes. Due to their situation, some diseases can cause chronic pelvic pain, such as irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or a hernia.
- Genitourinary causes include urethral syndrome, interstitial cystitis, ectopic pelvic kidney, urolithiasis, or ureteral obstructions.
- Neurological causes if, for example, a nerve is trapped in a scar or fascia.
- Musculoskeletal causes such as poor posture, sedentary lifestyle, or joint pain. This set should also highlight the pain caused by tension in the pelvic floor.
- Psychological causes. Chronic stress or depression can cause this type of pain.
Causes of chronic pelvic pain in men
Other causes that can cause chronic pelvic pain in men can be:
- Bacterial chronic prostatitis.
- Interstitial cystitis.
- Urethral pain syndrome.
- Pudendal nerve entrapment syndrome.
- Pelvic floor myofascial pain syndrome.
- Pain after urological surgery.
- Pain after a vasectomy.
Treatment of chronic pelvic pain
The treatment of chronic pelvic pain will depend in each case on the cause that caused it. There may be several treatments, mainly to treat the primary cause and pain.
Medications may be used as analogs é musicians to treat pain, more or less potent, whether oral or injectable form.
In addition, in the case of women, in many cases, hormonal treatment can help relieve pain and, for example, during menstruation or endometriosis.
In fibroids or adhesions and some cases of endometriosis, surgery may be used and may reduce or relieve pelvic pain. Depending on the causes, some nerves could be cut that lessen the pain or go to a hysterectomy, that is, remove the uterus, to eliminate the pain. This is only in cases where it is necessary, and the cause requires it.
When the pain is muscular, treatment and pain medications may include lifestyle improvements, such as eliminating a sedentary lifestyle and poor posture, and physical therapy if indicated.
This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to Chronic pelvic pain: causes, symptoms, and treatment, we recommend that you enter our category of Female reproductive system.
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.