Triangulation of a Needs Assessment on High-Tone Pelvic Floor Dysfunction.

Publication/Presentation Date



IMPORTANCE: High-tone pelvic floor dysfunction is a complex condition that is challenging to manage effectively. Pelvic floor physical therapy (PFPT) is often used in the treatment and relies on a coordinated effort between the physician, patient, and physical therapist. Collaboration is crucial for therapy success, but there is limited research that includes personal perspectives from these individuals.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this qualitative study was to gain further insight from these groups to identify areas for improvement in patient counseling and understanding of the diagnosis of high-tone pelvic floor dysfunction and the role of physical therapy.

STUDY DESIGN: The following participants were recruited: urogynecologists, pelvic floor physical therapists, and patients. Semistructured interviews were conducted exploring participant experiences with therapy and management of the condition and surrounding phenomena.

RESULTS: Participants interviewed included 5 urogynecologists, 5 pelvic floor physical therapists, and 15 patients. Similarities in key themes were identified: (1) the usefulness of pelvic models and illustrations in counseling, (2) appropriate descriptions of therapy, (3) motivating factors for patients, and (4) patient barriers to completing therapy. Several emergent themes revealed a misalignment in perspectives, including (1) patients reporting an unclear understanding of PFPT, (2) patient unawareness of the intimacy of therapy, and (3) reports of unsupportive and unempathetic physician providers.

CONCLUSIONS: There are both similarities and discrepancies in the perspectives among physicians, pelvic floor physical therapists, and patients regarding high-tone pelvic floor dysfunction and PFPT. Acknowledging these comparisons and adapting practices could facilitate patient-centered care and improve patient understanding of their diagnosis.




Medicine and Health Sciences




Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Document Type