Pain that lasts six months or longer in the region between your hips and below your bellybutton is referred to as chronic pelvic pain and may be an independent disorder or a sign of another illness.
Treating the underlying medical condition that appears to be the source of your chronic pelvic pain may be sufficient to end your suffering. However, it’s frequently impossible to pinpoint a single reason of persistent pelvic pain. The aim of treatment in that situation is to lessen your pain and other symptoms to improve your quality of life.
You might not point to a specific part of your pelvis when asked where the pain is located; instead, you could sweep your palm over the entire region. You could use one or more of the following descriptions to describe your persistent pelvic pain:
- Intermittent pain
- Steady and intense pain
- Cramps or sharp pain
- Dull aching pain
- Pressure pain or deep heaviness at the pelvis
Additionally, you might encounter:
- Pain when passing out stool or urine
- Pain with prolonged sitting
- Pain while having sexual intercourse
- Vaginal bleeding, spotting or discharge
- Bleeding in the rectum during bowel movement
- Fever or chills
- Groin pain
After prolonged standing, your discomfort can worsen; however, lying down might help.
It can be challenging to determine when a chronic pain issue warrants a visit to the doctor. In general, if your pelvic pain interferes with your everyday activities or if your symptoms seem to be becoming worse, schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Chronic pelvic pain can have a variety of causes and is a complicated issue and the cause can be narrowed down to just one condition.
Following are a few causes of persistent pelvic pain:
- Endometriosis. This is a disorder when tissue from the uterus’ lining develops outside the uterus. Similar to how your uterine lining responds to your menstrual cycle, these tissue deposits thicken, degrade, and bleed each month as your hormone levels rise and decrease. The blood and tissue cannot leave your body through your vagina because it is occurring outside of your uterus. Rather, they stay in your abdomen where they could result in uncomfortable cysts and bands of fibrous scar tissue (adhesions).
- Musculoskeletal problems. Recurrent pelvic pain can be brought on by diseases that affect your bones, joints, and connective tissues (musculoskeletal system), such as fibromyalgia, pelvic floor muscle tension, pubic symphysis inflammation, or hernia.
- Chronic pelvic inflammatory disease. This could happen if persistent scarring of your pelvic organs develops as a result of long-term infection caused by sexually transmitted diseases.
- Ovarian remnant. A small part of the ovary may unintentionally remain after the surgical removal of the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes and later produce uncomfortable cysts.
- Fibroids. Your lower abdomen may feel heavy or under strain as a result of these noncancerous uterine growths. They rarely experience sharp pain unless they run out of blood and start to die (degenerate).
- Irritable bowel syndrome. Bloating, constipation, or diarrhea, which are IBS symptoms, can cause pressure and pain in the pelvic area.
- Interstitial cystitis (painful bladder syndrome). This condition is characterized by recurrent bladder pain and a constant urge to urinate. As your bladder fills, you might experience pelvic pain; this pain might momentarily go away after you empty your bladder.
- Pelvic congestion syndrome. Some medical professionals think pelvic pain may be brought on by swollen, varicose-like veins near your uterus and ovaries. Other medical professionals, however, are far less persuaded that pelvic congestion syndrome is the source of pelvic pain because the majority of women with swollen pelvic veins don’t also have pain.
- Psychological factors. Your chance of developing chronic pelvic pain may be increased by depression, ongoing stress, or a history of sexual or physical abuse. Living with chronic pain increases emotional anguish, which in turn worsens pain. These two elements frequently spiral out of control.