Pelvic painBy Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pelvic-pain/MY00124
Pelvic pain is pain in the lowest part of your abdomen and pelvis. In women, pelvic pain may refer to symptoms arising from the reproductive or urinary systems or from musculoskeletal sources.
Depending on its source, pelvic pain may be dull or sharp; it may be constant or off and on (intermittent); and it may be mild, moderate or severe. Pelvic pain can sometimes radiate to your lower back, buttocks or thighs.
Pelvic pain can occur suddenly, sharply and briefly (acute) or over the long term (chronic). Chronic pelvic pain refers to any constant or intermittent pelvic pain that has been present for more than a few months.
Sometimes, you may notice pelvic pain only at certain times, such as when you urinate or during sexual activity.
Several types of diseases and conditions can cause pelvic pain. Often chronic pelvic pain results from more than one condition.
Pelvic pain may arise from your digestive, reproductive or urinary system. Recently, doctors have recognized that some pelvic pain, particularly chronic pelvic pain, may also arise from muscles and connective tissue (ligaments) in the structures of the pelvic floor. Occasionally, pelvic pain may be caused by irritation of nerves in the pelvis.
Female reproductive system
Pelvic pain arising from the female reproductive system may be caused by conditions such as:
Other causes in women or men
Examples of other possible causes of pelvic pain — in women or men — include:
- Colon cancer
- Crohn's disease
- Inguinal hernia
- Interstitial cystitis
- Intestinal obstruction
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Kidney stones
- Past physical or sexual abuse
- Pelvic floor muscle spasms
- Ulcerative colitis
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
When to see a doctor
If you suddenly develop severe pelvic pain, it may be a medical emergency and you should seek medical attention promptly. Be sure to get pelvic pain checked by your doctor if it's new, if it disrupts your daily life, or if it has gotten worse over time.
- Frequently asked questions. Gynecologic problems FAQ099. Chronic pelvic pain. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq099.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20130424T0842088403. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Rakel RE. Textbook of Family Medicine. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191205553-4/0/1481/0.html#. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2013: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about. do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-08373-7..00002-9&isbn=978-0-323-08373-7&about=true&uniqId=343863096-23. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Roett MA, et al. Ovarian cancer: An overview. American Family Physician. 2009;80:609.
- Marx JA, et al. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05472-0..X0001-1--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05472-0&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Townsend CM Jr, et al. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery: The Biological Basis of Modern Surgical Practice. 19th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1565/0.html. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Interstitial cystitis/painful bladder syndrome. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/interstitialcystitis/index.htm. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Howard F. Evaluation of acute pelvic pain in women. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Brown K, et al. Evaluation of acute pelvic pain in the adolescent female. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Howard F. Causes of chronic pelvic pain in women. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Andrews J, et al. Noncyclic Chronic Pelvic Pain Therapies for Women: Comparative Effectiveness Reviews No. 41. Rockville, Md. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2012. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK84586. Accessed April 7, 2013.
- Yunker A, et al. Systematic review of therapies for noncyclic chronic pelvic pain in women. Obstetrical & Gynecological Survey. 2012;67:417.
- Stacy J, et al. Persistent pelvic pain: Rising to the challenge. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. 2012;52:502.
- DeLee JC, et al. DeLee & Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine: Principles and Practice. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-3143-7..X0001-2--TOP&isbn=978-1-4160-3143-7&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed April 10, 2013.
- Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2013. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=$eid&isbn=978-1-4557-0295-4&uniqId=398813857-1936. Accessed April 10, 2013.