A Questionnaire to aid history taking
Where possible, asking your patient to complete a questionnaire at home before their appointment makes it easier to get the full history of their pain concerns. Completing it at home in their own time allows time to consider the answers carefully and collect important information, including details of any previous surgery. Using a questionnaire allows you to understand the main issues quickly and completely so that you can focus on the areas that concern her most. A suitable questionnaire is available through the PPFA Health Professional Subscribers login with access to training videos, a patient questionnaire to aid history taking and further patient resources. To become a PPFA Subscriber download the Application form and email to email@example.com
When a patient with complex pain consults you unexpectedly, it may be best to address only immediate needs at that time and provide information to read and the pelvic pain questionnaire for her to complete at home. Then arrange another longer appointment on another day.
Introductory reading for your patient at home
By reading about pelvic pain before her visit, your patient will be better prepared for the time you have together. The 20-page e–booklet below is free and can be passed on to friends and family. It introduces the concept of different types of pain, and a mix of treatments and encourages her to become an active partner in her health care.
Click Here >Pelvic Pain e-book 2017
They can read the more comprehensive book Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain E-book, available for AUS $22 from our online shop.
They can manage their aching or stabbing pains with help from Pelvic Physiotherapist, Patricia Neumann, using her downloadable MP3 Audio ‘Pelvic Floor Muscle Relaxation for Women‘ available for AUS $22 from our online shop.
An opportunity to bring a friend
Pain can be complex, and it may be difficult for her to take in all your advice when she feels unwell. Bringing a friend, partner or relative with her to her appointment means she will have someone to discuss your advice with after the appointment. This improves communication and involves those who are important in her life in her care.
Keeping track of progress
Making a list of her symptoms at the first visit makes it easier to track progress over time. During review visits, the original symptom list can be reviewed, with the opportunity to recognise problems that have been successfully managed and are no longer present, as well as identifying problems that still require attention.
How to manage her pain
The article below outlines a management plan you can use for your patients with pelvic pain.
Click here > Managing Chronic Pain in Girls and Women
(This article reproduced with permission, Medicine Today, 2013)
Remember that where pain is sudden or stabbing, a pelvic muscle component to the pain is usually present. This can cause difficulty moving when pain is severe. This site has information on how to recognise and manage pelvic muscle pain, and stretches to help release tension in these muscles. A simplified view of the big picture of chronic pelvic pain. The video below with Dr Susan Evans outlines Chronic Pelvic Pain and current management techniques.
Further support for your patient with pelvic pain
Suggest that your patient considers following the Pelvic Pain Foundation of Australia’s Facebook or Instagram page to keep up-to-date with the latest in pelvic pain management, available resources and research projects they may wish to become involved with – the Pelvic Pain Foundation of Australia holds events for women/AFAB and men/AMAB with pelvic pain, and to train GPs in this area. Check the Events page on this site.