Feel like you’re coughing your guts out?

APOPS new logo jpgCredit to Sherrie Palm founder Associateion for Pelvic Organ Prolapse Support

It’s flu season; you’re hacking and hacking until you feel like your bottom end is going to blow out. And it just might be. if you’re like me you start to ramp up the germ-phoebe aspect of your personality around this time of year. We all start paying more attention to washing our hands, get nervous about grabbing the door at stores we shop at, walk the other way when we hear someone  coughing. No one wants to get the flu. Yet despite the extra protective measures we take, we somehow manage to contract it. The majority of us are exposed to hundreds of germ infested surfaces every day; there’s just no way to get around it beyond wrapping ourselves in one of those protective bubbles. Not a very user friendly way to avoid getting sick.

I recently returned from a trip overseas and had concerns about being in airplanes and airports, knowing that the odds of my catching a bug were increased by being exposed to so many people in an enclosed environment. Every time someone coughed on the plane I thought to myself “keep your hands off your face, keep your hands off your face,” reciting it to myself like some kind of magical mantra that would protect me. Although I felt badly for the young child coughing non-stop a few rows up from me on the airbus, I equally worried that somehow the germs would float back to me in the recycled air of the plane.

Somehow I managed to make the long journey in both directions and come home with my body flu-free. Lucky me, I figured now I could relax. Then the inevitable happened-……read more Continue reading “Feel like you’re coughing your guts out?”

Pelvic Organ Prolapse awareness month for June

One womans journey and a whole lot of help for those who have pelvic organ prolapse
One womans journey and a whole lot of help for those who have pelvic organ prolapse

Helping raise the awareness of pelvic organ prolapse will help educate those who need to know what to do when they do find ‘bits falling outside of their bodies’.

Thousands of women are either too ashamed or simply don’t know what is happening to them. Pelvic organ prolapse happens for many reasons and over 50% of women experience this especially after giving birth.

One of the most common feelings is that you feel you are sitting on a tennis ball.

There are methods to help and prevent pelvic organ prolapse and with your help of passing this message along we can help those who need it.

Mothers, speak to your daughters (not always an easy subject) about it if you have experienced pelvic floor dysfunction. Chances are that if you have it so will your daughters.

Sherrie Palm, founder of APOPS (Association for pelvic organ pro. lapse support) has been fighting to bring this subject to the forefont of the medical staff who can help these women.




Press Release Pop Awareness Month 2014

Pelvic floor dysfunction in women before their first pregnancy

Credit: Lead women’s health physiotherapist Mary O’Dwyer newsletter

A high rate of pelvic floor dysfunction (PFD) in nulliparous women with clinically significant symptoms and associated bother has been reported in a cross sectional study (part of the SCOPE study) in Ireland.

A total of 1484 women completed the validated Australian Pelvic Floor Questionnaire at 15 weeks gestation. Urinary dysfunction was present in 61%, faecal dysfunction in 41%, prolapse in 5% and sexual dysfunction in 41%. The dysfunction was perceived as bothersome by 37%.

In the urinary section, 61% of participants reported at least one primary symptom and 35% showed clinically significant symptoms. In those who reported urinary incontinence (UI), stress urinary incontinence was present in 50%, urge urinary incontinence alone in 20% and mixed urinary incontinence in 30%. The overall prevalence of UI in this study was 24%.

In the faecal dysfunction (FD) section, 41% of all women were symptomatic for primary symptoms. Within this affected group, 5.3% reported faecal incontinence, 36.8% reported flatal incontinence and 5.5% reported obstructed defecation. The authors explain the high rates of FD could be partially explained by 11% of women having a medical history of irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease or inflammatory bowel disease.

Pelvic organ prolapse symptoms were reported by 4.8% of all women and 26% of symptomatic women commonly reported symptoms of vaginal pressure or heaviness. The authors state these results should be interpreted with caution as some bowel or bladder related symptoms might resemble prolapse.

Sexual dysfunction symptoms were reported by 41% of all women. Within this group 31% reported dyspareunia (painful intercourse), 25% reported vaginal tightness/vaginismus, 4.8% reported vaginal laxity and coital incontinence was reported by 1.2%. Regarding dyspareunia, the authors believe it is due to endometriosis, which is more prevalent in nulliparous women.

The study demonstrates that in the majority of nulliparous women with PFD, the disorder affects more than one pelvic floor compartment simultaneously. The authors stated the ‘high prevalence of PFD and multi-compartment involvement in nulliparous women could possibly suggest that congenital factors play an important role in PFD development. In order to understand the real role of childbearing in pelvic floor morbidity it is important to know the natural history of PFD by studying women before and after their first delivery.’

The authors believe the strength of this study is the large number of nulliparous women with extensive, detailed demographic characteristics and medical history of the participants. The study can be considered representative of an entire population from a statistical point of view. The main limitation of this study is that the women were not clinically examined to verify the questionnaires findings. As women completed the questionnaire in early pregnancy, they cannot rule out the potential for confusion or recall bias, as questions related only to pre-pregnancy status.

Due to the high prevalence of PDF in pregnant nulliparous women, the authors say that a comprehensive approach to investigating this group is needed to determine their history of PFD. Postpartum follow up will detect the role of pre-pregnancy PFD in the structure of postpartum pathology and determine the women who could be at a higher risk of severe postpartum PFD.


Durnea CM, Khashan AS, Kenny LC, Tabirca SS, O’Reilly BA. An insight in pelvic floor status in nulliparous women. Int Urogyn Journal. Vol 25: 3, 337-345. March 2014.

ImageMary O’Dwyer has written many wonderful books in a language every lay person can relate to. Her books ‘speak to you’ Hold it sister and hold it mama are available at all bookstores and on line at www.incostress.com

Medical professionals contact info@incostress.com for reduced prices on books.


Pelvic floor stimulators

Urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse can have a significant physical, social and psychological for many women. There are a number of solutions in the management of these problems.

The process of urination and its control depend on an intact neuromuscular system. The bladder is made up of smooth muscle – the detrusor muscle, while the urethra has smooth muscles with a band of striated muscle. Both the somatic and autonomic nervous systems provide innervation to these muscles. The bladder muscle must contract while the urethral sphincter relaxes during urination. It works best when the two are coordinated. The pelvic floor musculature consists of striated muscle fibres innervated by the pudendal nerve. By supporting the bladder and helping to lengthen the urethra, the pelvic floor muscles assist the passage of urine and its control.

Electrical stimulation is a modality that physiotherapists use to treat a variety of conditions. Electrical stimulation is used to restore normal physiological reflex mechanisms in abnormal nervous systems and muscles, as well as to strengthen striated muscles. Using Electro therapy, we try to stimulate the fibres of the pelvic (S2-S4), hypogastric (T10-L2), and pudendal nerves. It is believed that electrical stimulation can inhibit detrusor activity by activating inhibitory nerve fibres in the sympathetic hypogastric nerve, and inhibiting parasympathetic excitatory nerves in the pelvic nerve. It is also used to stimulate and strengthen the striated muscles of the pelvic floor via the pudendal nerve.

Routinely used machines are the interferential electrical stimulation machine and intra-vaginal stimulation machines. The Empi Intravaginal Stimulation Unit is a unit providing neuromuscular stimulation that can be used at home by the patient. The unit consists of a compact battery operated stimulator has two independent channels. One channel operates at 125 Hz to promote bladder inhibition; the other operates at 50 Hz to stimulate muscle contraction. Both channels can be used separately, or together. The electrode is a soft, silicone rubber cylinder about the size of a tampon. The electrode can be easily inserted and the patient learns how to take proper care of it. The therapist adjusts the settings on the stimulator and then the patient is taught how to control the intensity. The intensity should be high enough to cause a muscle contraction but within the patient’s comfort limits.

Many of the patients with incontinence have weakened musculature contributing to their urinary incontinence. Their symptoms often improve when they follow their prescribed exercise program and have adequate strength. Electrical stimulation is indicated when they have strength less than ‘fair’ as measured during a manual muscle test. It may also be indicated to provide sensory stimulation for patients with urge incontinence.

It is always advisable to seek medical help and undoubtedly a good session with your women’s health physiotherapist is the best way for you to learn correct techniques.


The Cramer Pessary for Stress incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.

Pessaries can play an important part in getting back a reasonable quality of life if you happen to suffer with stress incontinence (SUI)  and/or pelvic organ prolapse.

Today, pessary expert and advocate for women who suffer stress incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse Gaynor Morgan speaks about the Cramer Pessary.

Gaynor Morgan works with medical professionals and leading retailers all over Europe to help raise the awareness about the importance of getting incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse issues to the forefront and pushing for more education about these subjects.

Over 45% of women worldwide suffer with some type of pelvic organ prolapse and/ or incontinence. The World Health Organisation had deemed this as an epidemic that needs addressing.

Gaynor heads up the European side of the non profit organisation, APOPS – Association for pelvic organ prolapse support founded by award winning author of the book: Pelvic Organ Prolapse the silent epidemic. Ms Sherrie Palm.


The Cramer pessary:
Material : Medical grade silicone with a steel spring inside for stabilization

Size range: Diameter 50mm and increases in 5mm increments to the largest size 90mm

Use : for the management of stress incontinence, cystocele and uterine prolapse.

DO NOT USE IF: You have had prior surgery and this includes vaginoplasty. Reason being, the pelvic floor must be somewhat stable to retain this pessary.

Usage: Fit in the morning and remove in the evening. Lubricant is advisable if the vagina is very dry. Recommended lubricants are yes and ladysoft

Fitting: The Dr or physiotherapist should show you and get you to practise insertion and removal. Ensure the two thick ends are right against the urethra and do not pinch.

The Cramer will lift and support the bladder neck which controls the involuntary loss of urine in SUI (Stresss Urinary Incontinence)
The pelvic floor must be in tact for this pessary to be successful. It hasn’t been very successful in the management of rectocele but is very good in the management of a cystocele where the patient also presents a uterine prolapse grade 1 or 2.

Care of the Cramer: Wash under clean water and allow to airdry. (Drying with a towel or paper towel can leave debris behind to stick to the pessary which can be introduced into the vaginal lining and may cause problems. Cleaning with a pessary sanitiser such as IncoClean (without alcohol) can also be used. Autoclaving is possible.
DO NOT microwave or boil this pessary due to the metal spring inside.

If you still leak urine after it has been fitted, it is possible that you have not positioned it correctly. Remove and reposition.

They are not available on the NHS prescription at this time.

For more information please go to www.incostress.com and go to the free downloads.

What is a Kylie bed pad?

What Is A Kylie® Bed Pad?

It’s exactly how it sounds. A Kylie® Bed Pad is placed on top of the sheets, but under the duvet, and is highly Kylie® Bed Padsabsorbent, washable and with a waterproof backing. This allows you to keep your mattress clean and cut down on time consuming sheet washing and changing.

I worked in a nursing home very briefly after leaving school before starting my first job. The residents at the nursing home would all sleep on a Kylie® Bed Pad. It’s clear why such a product would find a place in a nursing home. Roughly, there are 3 great benefits for anyone:

  • The Kylie® absorbs urine away from the skin which keeps skin healthy
  • The Kylie® can be quickly changed and washed, cutting down on time consuming bedding changes
  • Kylie® Bed Pads are washable and reusable, so save lots of money over their life



Pfilates– A combination of pelvic floor exercise AND Pilates!

 One-Day Workshop

 Date: Saturday 28 or Sunday 29 September 2013


Venue: Springhealth Leisure, 81 Belsize Park Gardens, Belsize Park, London NW3 4NJ


Price: £197 – EARLY BIRD PRICE ENDS 31 JULY 2013!!!

Then £237 if paid thereafter


Book your space NOW – www.clairemockridge.com/pfilates

controls urge and stress incontinence. Gets you back into the shape you need
controls urge and stress incontinence. Gets you back into the shape you need

 Who is Pfilates suitable for?

Pfilates is suitable for:

  • Fitness Instructors
  • Personal Trainers
  • Pilates Teachers
  • Ante/Postnatal Specialists
  • Chiropractors
  • Physiotherapists
  • Osteopaths
  • And, ANYONE with an interest in pelvic floor health!

You do NOT need to have a Pilates qualification to attend, and on completion of the Workshop, you’ll receive certification as a Pfilates Instructor.

The Pfilates method can be used 1-2-1 with clients who require specialist attention, and also lends itself well to instruction in small groups.  Pfilates is particularly popular with groups of postnatal women.

Who created Pfilates?

Founder of Pfilates program
Founder of Pfilates program

The PFilates program was created by Urogynecologist Dr. Bruce Crawford to help women and men improve pelvic floor fitness.

Pfilates includes a series of exercise routines to assist clients improve pelvic floor strength, in a progressive pelvic floor fitness training program.

In 2008, Dr. Crawford studied 120 mat Pilates, Yoga, and personal training movements using and from this pool of data, a series of movements were selected that provide excellent passive engagement of the pelvic floor by using various co-contractors including the Transversus abdominis, lower extremity adductors, and Gluteals.

The result?  We achieve much greater motor-unit recruitment per contraction than the “traditional  Kegel”.

The Pfilates program exploits principals of plyometric training and overflow to achieve optimal pelvic floor performance.

Book your space NOW here: www.clairemockridge.com/pfilates

Contact Claire for Pfilates training
Contact Claire for Pfilates training

Date: Saturday 28 or Sunday 29 September 2013

Venue: Springhealth Leisure, 81 Belsize Park Gardens, Belsize Park, London NW3 4NJ

Price: £197 – EARLY BIRD PRICE ENDS 31 JULY 2013!!!

Then £237 if paid thereafter

For more details, your UK contacts are:

– Sarah Rosenfield


– Tel: 07767 404748

– Claire Mockridge


– Tel: 07747 656550


Order your Pfilates kits or Pfilates DVDs from www.incoshop.co.uk  64 min Pfilates DVDs an incredible £9.99