Postnatal pelvic floor muscle training aims to rehabilitate the pelvic floor muscles. To be effective, a certain exercise dosage must be respected. Recent trials evaluated the effect of different programs on prevention/treatment of urinary incontinence immediately after delivery and in treatment of persistent incontinence.
Only three systematic reviews, six trials, and four follow-up studies have been published in the past two decades. High heterogeneity in postnatal pelvic floor muscle training programs is observed throughout the literature, making comparisons difficult. In the prevention/treatment of postnatal urinary incontinence immediately after delivery and in persistent incontinence, supervised intensive programs prove more effective than standard postnatal care. Longer-term results have yet to show advantages for postnatal training programs.
Although a certain exercise dosage must be respected for a postnatal pelvic floor muscle training program to be effective, a few randomized controlled trials present such dosage. Randomized controlled trials should study the effect of supervised, intensive training protocols with adherence aids. As standard care does not seem to reduce the prevalence of postnatal urinary incontinence, obstetrics services must address delivery of postnatal pelvic floor muscle training.
School of Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
Correspondence to Chantale Dumoulin, PhD, PT, School of Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, 2375 Chemin de la Côte Sainte-Catherine, Montreal, Quebec, H3T 1A8, Canada Tel: +514 343 6111 ext 0233#; fax: +514 344 1991; e-mail: Chantal.email@example.com