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Michael Brandy, Deseret News
Physical therapist Susan McLaughlin, right, demonstrates hip flexion to promote pelvic floor stretch and hip mobility.

SALT LAKE CITY — Questions about issues people should be aware of regarding pelvic pain will be answered on Saturday 10 a.m. to noon during the monthly Deseret News/Intermountain Healthcare Hotline.

Physical therapists Susan McLaughlin and Jake Magel with Intermountain Healthcare will answer calls.

From the Salt Lake area, call 801-236-6061. Elsewhere, the toll-free number is 1-800-925-8177.

"Ten percent of women going to a gynecologist have some sort of pelvic (pain) issue," said Susan McLaughlin, women's health and pelvic pain therapist at the Intermountain Orthopedic and Spine Therapy Clinic. "Pelvic pain can present as pain in the abdomen, deep inside the pelvis, the lower back, in the buttocks, hips or thigh."

She said the source of pelvic pain could be muscle-related, organ-related … dealing with the uterus, ovaries or bladder or gut-related. Physical therapy is one of the avenues available to patients who have ongoing pelvic pain, along with treatment from a physician, she noted.

"I look at muscle length and muscle tension and a good screening of the lower extremities; the hips, the pelvis and the lumbar spine," she said. A gynecologist would look at other potential medical factors causing the pain, she added.

Part of physical therapy treatment involves improving flexibility through stretching to alleviate muscle tension and overall anxiety caused by the chronic nature of pelvic pain, McLaughlin said.

"A lot of the treatments are really 'hands-on' as far as teaching (patients) how to breathe and focus on relaxation," she said. "The physical therapy is important because it's trying to restore the body back into balance."

Call hotline Saturday

Issues regarding pelvic and neck pain are the topic of Saturday's Deseret News/Intermountain Healthcare Hotline. From 10 a.m. to noon, physical therapists Susan McLaughlin and Jake Magel of Intermountain Healthcare will answer questions from callers.

From the Salt Lake area, call 801-236-6061. Elsewhere, the toll-free number is 1-800-925-8177, only operational during hotline hours.

e-mail: [email protected]