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Ilana Glazer opens up about chronic pelvic floor pain, but what is it?

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Ilana Glazer has revealed she suffered from chronic pelvic floor pain for two decades before she was officially diagnosed.

The actor and director took to Instagram on Thursday morning (21 July) and wrote: “OK WOW so this is an intimate a** (but actually, pelvic floor) journey for me to share. It’s been one of the deepest sources of pain in my life — I suffered from intense chronic pelvic floor pain for 20 years. Damn writing that out is wild — 20 yrs!”

She continued: “​​I found relief and release in a multi-faceted approach to healing, and one very important mode was physical therapy.”

Speaking about the pain further in an interview withVogue, the Broad City actor said that she was dismissed by doctors multiple times in the 20 years it took to get diagnosed.

“I remember being 15 years old and my mum and I sitting there and this doctor telling me that my problem was too problematic for him, and just feeling laughed at and so angry,” she said.

She added that when she was seven years old she had been suffering from urethral spasms, but her doctor prescribed her yeast infection cream.

It was only when she was at university and met with a doctor whose daughter had the same issue that Glazer was properly diagnosed.

“I look back at my pelvic floor as where I held my anxiety and depression,” she explained, and said her “multifaceted approach” away from the pain included antidepressants and talk therapy.

What is chronic pelvic floor pain?

According to the Mayo Clinic, chronic pelvic floor pain for women is pain in the area between your hips and below your belly button that lasts for longer than six months.

It can be caused by another medical problem (such as endometriosis or musculoskeletal problems) which, if treated, should make the pain go away. But it can also be a condition in its own right.

Chronic pelvic floor pain is more common among women.

It is different to pelvic pain which is generally short term and can be caused by irritable bowel syndrome, urinary tract infection, or sexually transmitted infections.

What are the symptoms of chronic pelvic floor pain?

Symptoms of chronic pelvic floor pain can include:

  • Severe and steady pain
  • Pain that comes and goes
  • Dull aching
  • Sharp pains or cramping
  • Pressure or heaviness deep within your pelvis

You may also suffer from pain during sex, pain from sitting down for too long, or painful bowel movements.

How can chronic pelvic floor pain be treated?

Firstly, to be diagnosed with chronic pelvic floor pain you will need to book an appointment with your GP who may recommend a pelvic exam or an ultrasound.

If they can pinpoint a specific cause of the pain, then it will be treated accordingly. Otherwise the goal is to improve quality of life through pain relievers, hormone treatments, physical therapy, and antidepressants.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, book an appointment with your GP.

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