Did you know that the pelvic bone is the strongest in the body? Well now you do.it is a bone made up of six bones in total three on either side of the body. Each side is a fusion of the ischium, ilium and the pubis that are joined to their pair at the front to form the symphisis pubis (which is a cartilaginous bone).the entire bone is commonly called the os/coxae.Being a very dynamic bone, dysfunction and pain can be caused by several factors
Causes of Pelvic Pain
Ankylosing spondylitis(As):This is a chronic autoimmune inflammation that causes stiffening of the spinal joints. The swelling causes new bone to grow that fuses to the already existing bone. The sacroiliac joint involvement is the hallmark of As.The inflammation causes pain around the pelvic bone and is the most common diagnosed disease when pelvic bone is involved
Joint sprain: the pelvic bone is joined to the rest of the spine at the sacroiliac joint, this joint is the strongest joint in the body and for that reason it is covered extensively by muscles, ligaments and tendons. The joint is a highly movable and that makes the muscles and ligaments very susceptible to tears and sprains.
A ligament tear can cause joint instability which translate to pain and joint stiffness around the pelvic area. A torn muscle is also unable to relax and contract effectively during movement during which pain is elicited. Sprain injuries are caused by trauma due to a fall or a road accident and the symptoms include muscle spasms, inflammation and eventually pelvic pain
Fracture: though rare, with excessive impact of pressure on the bone, the bone is likely to fracture. This is common in young athletes whose bones are still developing and they accidentally fall on their back, osteoporotic women are also prone to this kind of fractures but when the disease is well advanced.
A broken pelvic bone is very painful and takes long to heal as unlike others, it cannot be applied a cast/POP(plaster of paris).in case of a fracture, you may be forced to a strict bed confinement until it heals
Illnesses Related to Pelvic Pain
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
This is a complication of sexually transmitted disease like gonorrhea and chlamydia in women of reproductive age, it occurs as a result of the disease causing organism travelling past the cervix and to upper parts of the female reproductive organs including the uterus, fallopian tubes and the ovaries. The major symptom is the pain that occurs due to the inflammatory process and is felt around the pelvic area. On abdominal ultrasound, there is a huge mass like swelling around the pelvic area that is seen.
The pain has a dull ache and irritating in nature accompanied by symptoms of fever,painfull urination,nausea and vomiting and pain during sex
A broad spectrum antibiotic dose of five days is prescribed with strong pain killers
To avoid spread of the infection, you are advised to maintain vaginal hygiene, being faithful to one sexual partner and using a condom help to keep off the infection in the first place
Cancers: there are two types of cancers that are very specific to the pelvic bone,these are chonrosarcoma and ewings sarcoma,though quite rare to come by, they can cause a severe amount of pain when they start to grow and multiple,this pain like other bone cancer pain is very painful and likely to become life-threatening. Malignant cancers can also spread from other organs to the pelvic bone causing this kind of pain
Morphine(opioid pain killer) is highly recommended by oncologists as a remedy for cancer pain and the results are quite okay even without the fear that there could be drug dependence effects as it is given in small doses over a specific amount of time
Pelvic bone pain in pregnancy:though not obvious,pelvic bone pain can also be experienced during pregnancy.as the growing uterus continues to enlarge, it puts pressure on the surrounding organs and nerves which become pressed and produce sensory feeling of pain around the pelvic area where the uterus is located.
The condition most often occurs if that its your first time to be pregnant as there are many changes taking place in your body for the very first time, the pain seems to be less worse with every subsequent pregnancy as the body at this time has gotten used to the stretching.
Intermittent cystitis: this is an inflammation of the bladder than occurs in both men and women.it is called intermittent because it has periods of remission and exacerbation(on and off).
Several reasons have been stipulated as to cause the inflammation such as prolonged full bladder sensation without emptying,normal micro-organisms that become infectious when your immunity is compromised, ascending infections of the urethra and honeymoon cystitis.
The inflammation causes pain around the pelvic area and there is abdominal tenderness when you try to touch.
Treatment of Pelvic Pain
The pain in the pelvic area can take a while before you are able to single handedly pick it out,you need to pay keen attention to the point at which the pain comes from and deal with it.You may need to undergo various imaging tests like X-rays,MRI’s and CT-scans that are able to identify the pathology of the bony structure and be able to deal with the pain once and for all.
Mild pelvic pains may also occur once in a while due to prolonged standing and especially with high heeled shoes for the ladies but this can be managed with pelvic exercises done on a regular basis.