Bladder & Bowel Dysfunction

Rehabilitation of pelvic floor muscles involves retraining of reflexes of the bladder and bowel, learning correct voiding techniques and learning when to strengthen and when to release.

Bladder & Bowel Dysfunction

Physiotherapy for Bladder and Bowel

There are many forms of bladder dysfunction and it can present in any of the following ways:

Stress incontinence when an increase in abdominal pressure such as with a cough or running overcomes the closure pressure in the urethra and a leak occurs.

Urge incontinence when a strong urge to go to the toilet precedes the leak and there isn’t enough time to get there.

Urgency when there are frequent strong urges to go to the toilet and they are difficult to control.

Frequency when there is a need to go to the toilet more than 8 times in a 24 hour period.


Bowel dysfunction can present in the form of:

Urgency where the bowel has to be emptied immediately once the urge sensation is experienced and this is difficult to control.

Fecal incontinence where there is loss of stool.

Anal incontinence where there is loss of gas or mucus.

Difficulty cleaning where there is poor control at the time of emptying.

Defecation dysfunction where it is difficult to pass a motion often due to imbalance of the pelvic floor muscles.

Rectal pain where there may be contributing pelvic floor muscle tension.


Physiotherapy is the rehabilitation of the pelvic floor muscles through either release or strengthening, retraining of the reflexes of the bladder and bowel and learning correct voiding and defecation techniques.


The pelvic floor therapists at Milltown are Elaine BarryStephanie CrosslandNoreen DockeryLaura FitzpatrickHelen MacDevitt, Sharon MacNallySarah MulllinsEimear Murphy and Maeve Whelan.