Pelvic floor disorders involve a weakening of the muscles or ligaments that support the uterus, bladder, and rectum.
Following surgery for pelvic-floor disorders many of the activities are restricted. In mild cases, the organs protrude into the vagina, whereas in severe cases, they may actually protrude outside the body.
Treatment involves special Kegel exercises for mild cases and surgery for more severe cases. It is said that increased abdominal pressure disturbs the operation. Hence it is a common practice for the doctors to advice women not to engage in exercise and heavy labor after pelvic floor surgery.
Dr. Ingrid Nygaard from the University of Utah College of Medicine in Salt Lake City and her associates conducted a study regarding the restriction of some of the common activities essential in one's life.
They said that these restrictions can be life altering, preventing women from caring for children, working and exercising. They then published their findings in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology.
They recruited 30 women between 20-60 years of age who had no medical conditions that limited their daily activities. The researchers measured abdominal pressures as the women performed a variety of activities such as coughing, rising from a chair, climbing stairs, jumping jacks, abdominal crunches and lifting weights. All these activities caused less abdominal pressure.
On the other hand activities such as forceful coughing and lifting 35 pounds from the floor caused higher abdominal pressures and probably should still be avoided after surgery. Body mass index also played an important role in increasing abdominal pressures.
Hence it was made clear by them that it would be beneficial to lose weight. Age had a very little impact on abdominal pressure. But Nyggard's team concludes that further research is necessary in this field to show the true clinical impact of activity and abdominal pressure on pelvic floor dysfunction.