Silvana Yee Pelvic Health

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Physiotherapists have the training to care for the transgender and gender diverse population. As healthcare professionals we acknowledge the fact that patients will have individual differences and that our main priority is to provide an environment that is culturally safe, inclusive and welcoming. By providing a culturally safe and welcoming environment will ensure patient comfort and allow for optimal care.

What role does pelvic floor physiotherapy play in the transgender and gender diverse population?

For individuals who are contemplating bottom surgery physiotherapy can help pre-operatively to address any pre-existing pelvic floor /pelvic pain issues and any associated symptoms involving the hips, low back and sacroiliac joints.

For individual’s who have undergone bottom surgery the physiotherapist will educate the patient about their new anatomy and treatment techniques to assist with stretching and lengthening the pelvic floor muscles. Furthermore, there will be education on the use of dilators and treatment plan will be developed that will use a progressive approach in evolving to the next size dilator.

For individuals who are consistent with binding their upper trunk; issues can occur such as: GI issues, difficulties with breathing resulting in rib cage dysfunction, postural dysfunction, muscle wasting, and skin breakdown. Dysfunction in the abdomen, thorax, and diaphragm can also influence the overall function of the pelvic floor. A physiotherapist can help individual’s identify these issues and educate on the benefits of decreasing binding stress and provide strategies on how to continue to bind and prevent these symptoms from reoccurring.

For individuals that are tucking, physiotherapists can provide education on abdominal and groin massage and stretches to decrease tension and to be able to identify symptoms such as numbness and tingling which could indicate circulatory issues indicating that the undergarment is too tight.