A Pilot Randomized Trial of Levator Injections Versus Physical Therapy for Treatment of Pelvic Floor Myalgia and Sexual Pain
Introduction and hypothesis Our aim was to determine the effects of pelvic floor physical therapy (PT) and levator-directed trigger-point injections (LTPI) on sexual function and levator-related pelvic pain.
Study design A randomized trial among women with pelvic floor myalgia (PFM) was performed wherein participants received either PT or LTPI. Pain was assessed and 1 month posttreatment completion. Levator-based pain was assessed using a numeric rating scale (NRS) and the Patient Global Impression of Improvement (PGI-I) scale. Sexual function was assessed using the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI).
Results Twenty-nine women completed the study (17 had PT, 12 had LTPI). Both groups reported reduction in vaginal pain: mean NRS change from baseline of 4.47 [standard deviation (SD) 2.12) for PT and 4.67 (SD 1.72) for LTPI (p = 0.8)]. A >50 % improvement in NRS was documented among 59 % of women receiving PT and 58 % receiving LTPI (p = 1.0). Consistent with NRS scores, mean PGI-I score was 2.50 (SD 1.17) for PT and 2.17 (SD 1.01) for LTPI (p = 0.5). Mean change in FSFI favored PT [PT +8.87 (SD 5.60), LTPI +4.00 (SD 5.24), p = 0.04], reflecting improvement in the sexual pain domain favoring PT (p = 0.02). However, the time in weeks to effect improvement favored LTPI if controlling for the degree of change in NRS (p = 0.01) and FSFI (p = 0.01).
Conclusions Vaginal myalgia and sex-related pain improved with pelvic floor PT and LTPI. Time-to-effect improvement and significance of therapy are dependent on treatment type.
Sroga, J. M.,
& whiteside, J.
(2015). A Pilot Randomized Trial of Levator Injections Versus Physical Therapy for Treatment of Pelvic Floor Myalgia and Sexual Pain. International Urogynecology Journal, 26 (6), 845-852.