Chronic Pelvic Pain

CenteringCPP_100x100We believe it is important to consider all aspects of a woman’s health — mind, body and spirit — when caring for women with Chronic Pelvic Pain (CPP). There are many potential sources of pelvic pain that should be investigated. Pelvic pain may involve the urinary, reproductive, gastrointestinal, neurological, psychological, and musculoskeletal systems. When all the different sources of CPP are explored and treated, many women find relief from their pelvic pain. For some women, that means complete remission of their pain; for other women, it means a significant improvement in their quality of life.

Chronic pelvic pain is one of the most common medical problems among women. It is defined as pain in the pelvis lasting more than 6 months that affects a woman’s quality of life. Many women with chronic pain suffer from anxiety and/or depression, which may worsen pain. Recurring or chronic pain can cause some women to feel depressed, and these feelings are normal. It is essential that these psychological issues be addressed with therapy and/or medications as needed.

Gynecologic sources of pelvic pain include:

  • Endometriosis
  • Pelvic floor muscle dysfunction
  • Vulvodynia

There are non-gynecologic problems that can also cause pelvic pain, such as:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Musculoskeletal issues


 Watch the video by Priscilla Abercrombie, RN, NP, PhD, AHN-BC
UCSF OB/GYN Grand Rounds 4/3/12
(Note: advance to 13 minutes)


Please visit our Appointments page to schedule a visit with one of our Integrative Women’s Health specialists.



What the research shows about Integrative Medicine for chronic pelvic pain:

  • Complementary and Alternative Treatments for Chronic Pelvic Pain
    Myofascial pelvic pain (MFPP) is a major component of chronic pelvic pain (CPP) and often is not properly identified by health care providers. The hallmark diagnostic indicator of MFPP is myofascial trigger points in the pelvic floor musculature that refer pain to adjacent sites. Effective treatments are available to reduce MFPP, including myofascial trigger point release, biofeedback, and electrical stimulation. An interdisciplinary team is essential for identifying and successfully treating MFPP.
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