Published by Clinical Pain Advisor
A Pain Week 2017 presentation by Kathryn Witzeman, MD, FACOG, associate professor at the University of Colorado in Denver and director of the Women’s Integrated Pelvic Health Program at Denver Health Medical Center, focused on integrative modalities for the treatment of female chronic pelvic pain (CPP).
Dr Witzeman began the program by noting that CPP is a symptom, not a diagnosis. “The term ‘chronic pelvic pain’ does little to guide a clinician in selecting treatment modalities that focus on contributors to the symptom of pelvic pain,” Dr Witzeman told Clinical Pain Advisor. “It also focuses the patient on ‘pain’ and the treatment of pain, instead of what is actually contributing to their experience and how they can be engaged and impactful in feeling better.”
Rather than addressing the presenting symptom or specific disease separately, clinicians should aim to identify underlying factors that commonly contribute to chronic pain, such as stress, poor nutrition, and inflammation. Potential contributing factors to CPP in particular include gastrointestinal, urinary, reproductive, and neurosensory issues, as well as psychiatric conditions such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.