Background: Pelvic girdle pain (PGP) usually presents during pregnancy. About 25% of all pregnant women and 5% of all women suffer from postpartum lumbopelvic pain causing them to seek medical help. This article discusses possible causes, diagnostic aspects and treatment of PGP.
Material and method: The paper is based on literature identified through non-systematic searches in PubMed, Medline, Embase, Cinahl and Cochrane. Only randomized controlled trials were considered for effect of treatment.
Results: Possible underlying mechanisms are hormonal, biomechanical, inadequate motor control and stress of ligament structures. The diagnosis should be based on pain location and several clinical tests. Characteristic signs are problems with walking, standing and sitting. There is evidence for the existence of PGP subgroups that require different treatment. It is well documented that individualized physiotherapy focused on body awareness and specific functional training, has a good and long-lasting effect. Patients with PGP may benefit from reassuring information based on medical history and clinical examination. When needed, patients may be referred to targeted individualized physiotherapy which is continuously evaluated. Few seem to have effect of general or stabilizing exercises.
Interpretation: General or stabilizing exercises seem to have miner effect in a number of women.