Botox combined with myofascial release physical therapy as a treatment for myofascial pelvic pain

Investig Clin Urol. 2017 Mar;58(2):134-139. doi: 10.4111/icu.2017.58.2.134. Epub 2017 Feb 1.


Purpose: To report the effects of combined onabotulinumtoxinA (Botox) injections and myofascial release physical therapy on myofascial pelvic pain (MFPP) by comparing pre- and posttreatment average pelvic pain scores, trigger points, and patient self-reported pelvic pain. Secondary outcomes were to examine posttreatment complications and determine demographic differences between patients with/without an improvement in pain.

Materials and methods: This was an Institutional Review Board approved retrospective case series on women over 18 years with MFPP who received Botox and physical therapy between July 2006 and November 2014. Presence of trigger points and pelvic pain scores were determined by digital palpation of the iliococcygeus, puborectalis, obturator internus, and rectus muscles. Average pelvic pain scores (0-10) reflected an average of the scores obtained from palpation of each muscle. Self-reported improvement in pain was recorded as yes/no.

Results: Fifty women met the inclusion/exclusion criteria. Posttreatment, patients had lower average pelvic pain scores (3.7±4.0 vs. 6.4±1.8, p=0.005), and fewer trigger points (44% vs. 100%, p<0.001). Fifty-eight percent of patients (95% confidence interval, 44-72) noted an improvement in self-reported pain. Patients most likely to report no improvement in pain had chronic bowel disorders, while those most likely to report an improvement in pain had a history of past incontinence sling (p=0.03). Posttreatment complications included: constipation (8%), worsening urinary retention (2%), and urinary tract infection (4%).

Conclusions: Botox combined with soft tissue myofascial release physical therapy under anesthesia can be effective in treating women with chronic pelvic pain secondary to MFPP.

Keywords: Botox; Myofascial pain; Pelvic pain; Therapy.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine Release Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Acetylcholine Release Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Acetylcholine Release Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anesthesia, General
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A / administration & dosage
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A / adverse effects
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A / therapeutic use*
  • Chronic Pain / therapy
  • Combined Modality Therapy / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intramuscular
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Manipulations / adverse effects
  • Musculoskeletal Manipulations / methods*
  • Myofascial Pain Syndromes / therapy*
  • Pain Measurement / methods
  • Pelvic Pain / therapy*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Acetylcholine Release Inhibitors
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A