Difference between Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction (PSD) Pre & Postnatal vs. in athletes; Footballers

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I have spent much time trying to research the number of women who experienced Pubic Symphysis (PSD) pre or postnatal. The problem in providing a figure for Pubic Symphysis pain is the lack of research on this joint alone during pre or postnatal. When trying to research insights on this injury most medical papers and journals were on footballers diagnosed with this injury.

What is PSD?

For soon to be mothers – Due to the hormone ‘relaxin’ released during pregnancy, the ligaments relax at the Pubic Symphysis and Sacroilliac Joints. This causes an increase in mobility and separation in these areas, causing strain which can cause pain in these or each joint. I found an increase in specific pubic groin pain when walking or taking one foot of the ground due to the proportionally large weight of my baby. For me this was prevalent during my first pregnancy and 4 months postnatal.

For Footballers – Pubic bone pain often radiates to the adductors (inner thigh, usually their kicking leg), due to tight muscles attaching to this bone.

How I recovered from PSD?

Firstly to minimise pain during pregnancy I wore a pelvic girdle belt to decrease the weight bearing of my baby on my pubic bone. These can be obtained from your physio.

The main objective was pelvis stability – Focus on strengthening the Glute Medius / Deep Abdominals and Pelvic Floor muscles, featured in my App.

This was a main reason why I developed this App as there was little research or treatments documented for this injury in mums or soon to be mothers.

THE STATISTICS: How prevalent is PSD?

Sacroiliac Joint (lower back pain), Pelvic girdle pain & Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction pain aren’t separately researched. A review article from Vleeming’s European guidelines (’07) of pelvic girdle pain management, documents little on Pubic Symphysis pain in isolation, however Pelvic girdle pain; Sacroilliac joint (lower back pain), as a whole has a prevalence of around 50%.

A study conducted by the Royal Women’s Hospital (’12), documented 20% of pregnant women experienced pelvic pain (PGP and PSD) during their pregnancy.