The Pelvic Pain Specialty Center is located on the Akron City Hospital Campus at 75 Arch Street, Suite 101, and can be contacted at (330) 762-0954. www.summahealth.org
Approximately 20 Percent of Women Affected by Chronic Pelvic Pain
Summa Health System recently became one of the few healthcare providers in the U.S. to offer a program dedicated to the treatment of chronic pelvic pain when its Women’s Health Services opened a Pelvic Pain Specialty Center (PPSC). The PPSC offers a multidisciplinary team of gynecology, psychiatry and traumatic stress specialists in an evidence-based approach to the assessment and treatment of pelvic pain, which affects approximately 15 – 20 percent of all women.
Chronic pelvic pain in women is defined as pain either starting in or projecting to the pelvis for at least six months, although some women suffer with the disorder for much longer periods of time. The chronic pelvic pain can include depression, pain before during or after menstruation, pain associated with sexual intercourse, pain before, during or after urination, difficulties passing stool and pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia.
“The creation of the center is significant because it provides a true multidisciplinary approach to treatment and offers real options for women affected by chronic pelvic pain,” said Bradford Fenton, M.D.,Ph.D., medical director of the PPSC. “Research shows treatment through a multidisciplinary approach is significantly more effective than treatment without a pelvic pain center.”
Summa’s PPSC evaluates its patients through the use of a validated survey instrument, a complete physical examination with pain mapping, laboratory and imaging studies and a mental health examination. Individual treatment plans are developed following completion of the comprehensive examination, ranging from treatment of a disorder of pain processing and pain perception to surgery for things such as endometriosis, fibroids or adhesions.
As part of the Summa Minimally Invasive Surgery Center, the PPSC is able to offer patients with complex surgical needs the very latest in advanced laparoscopic techniques. Since many patients with endometriosis or adhesions have undergone multiple surgeries in an attempt to relieve their symptoms, the availability of advanced minimally invasive surgery offers them an opportunity to avoid open surgery and return to a normal lifestyle more quickly.