Sunday 4 December 2016

'I've noticed a definite improvement thanks to biofeedback'

Published 15/11/2011 | 06:00

"On the birth of my second child, I had a very bad tear -- the baby was stuck and the tear was so bad that it tore the back passage. It was awful. I was 22 and wearing Tena pads every day.

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"Afterwards I had very little control with urgency which meant I now came under the excellent care of the Perineal Clinic in Holles Street. They do extensive tests to see how much feeling/strength is left. I also had biofeedback physiotherapy. This involved putting a probe in which gave a charge and caused the relevant muscles to contract. The charge became stronger as I became more used to it which meant there was more feeling or strength.

"I attended this for a number of weeks and, along with regular pelvic floor exercises, the results were very good.

"I became pregnant nine years after that. However, despite the aftercare, things had become progressively worse. I had become so used to the urgency and control I did not really notice that I had measures in place for emergencies. For instance, I always went to the toilet before I left the house.

"My doctor booked me in for biofeedback physiotherapy after my daughter was born. Now I do this at home. I rented a CombiStim XP, which is a digital device for the treatment of incontinence. It basically stimulates weakened pelvic floor muscles using Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS). It can also measure the strength and quality of your muscles.

"I have noticed a definite improvement with regular use. I can now happily bounce on a trampoline with my kids and I know I won't leak. I only wish I'd sought help after the birth of my first baby and I would have saved myself a lot of upset and frustration."

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