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Friday, March 29, 2024

You Just Had a Baby: Should You See a Urogynecologist?

Posted By: Advancing Care

Medically reviewed by Cara Grimes, MD

Bringing new life into the world is a miraculous experience, but for many women, it can also lead to significant changes in pelvic health. While postpartum care traditionally involves obstetrician- gynecologists (OB/GYNs), there's a specialized field dedicated to addressing the unique pelvic health needs of new mothers: urogynecology.

Many women in the United States are only referred to a urogynecologist in extreme cases, such as severe tears or signs of pelvic organ prolapse. However, early intervention is crucial for maintaining pelvic health in the long term.

You Just Had a Baby: Should You See a Urogynecologist?

Even if a woman doesn't have obvious symptoms after having a baby, it's important to address pelvic floor health early on. Whether it's preventive or addressing specific injuries, pelvic floor therapy focuses on strengthening and rehabilitating the pelvic floor muscles.

While most women see their OB/GYN within six weeks of giving birth, many aren’t aware of the benefits of seeing a urogynecologist.

Urogynecologists are equipped to:

  • Assess and address a range of postpartum issues including muscle weakness, pelvic organ prolapse and urinary incontinence
  • Tailor treatment plans to strengthen pelvic floor muscles and promote healing for injuries like perineal tears
  • Offer personalized guidance and support
  • Refer patients to physical therapists, who can provide physical and manual therapy and biofeedback — a technique that monitors and helps patients control specific physiological processes — to meet individual needs
  • Refer patients to specialists who will initiate postpartum rehabilitation soon after delivery to expedite recovery and minimize long-term complications
  • Empower new mothers to regain pelvic health and resume an active postpartum lifestyle

If you experience symptoms such as urinary incontinence, pelvic pain or pelvic organ prolapse prior to six weeks postpartum, you should consult a healthcare provider or urogynecologist as soon as possible for evaluation and treatment. Please visit WMCHealth to learn more about our urogynecology program, select a provider or make an appointment. Addressing pelvic floor issues early in the postpartum period can have significant implications for long-term well-being.