Pelvic floor muscle exercise for chronic low back pain

J Int Med Res. 2013 Feb;41(1):146-52. doi: 10.1177/0300060513475383. Epub 2013 Jan 23.


Objective: To assess the effect of pelvic floor muscle exercise in patients with chronic low back pain.

Methods: Adults (aged ≥ 18 years) with chronic low back pain (with or without radiculopathy) were randomized to undergo either routine treatment (ultrasonography, short wave diathermy and lumbar strengthening exercises; control group) or routine treatment with pelvic floor exercises (intervention group) for 24 weeks. Pain, disability (Oswestry Disability Index [ODI] score) and trunk muscle function were assessed at baseline and after completion of treatment.

Results: The study included 47 patients (control group n = 24; intervention group n = 23). Pain severity and ODI scores were significantly lower in the intervention group than in the control group after 24 weeks. There were no significant between-group differences in trunk muscle function.

Conclusion: Pelvic floor exercise in combination with routine treatment provides significant benefits in terms of pain relief and disability over routine treatment alone.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Muscles / diagnostic imaging
  • Abdominal Muscles / physiopathology*
  • Adult
  • Chronic Pain / diagnostic imaging
  • Chronic Pain / physiopathology
  • Chronic Pain / therapy*
  • Demography
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Exercise Therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain / diagnostic imaging
  • Low Back Pain / physiopathology
  • Low Back Pain / therapy*
  • Male
  • Pelvic Floor / diagnostic imaging
  • Pelvic Floor / physiopathology*
  • Ultrasonography