International Urogynecology Journal

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 22–26 | Cite as

Patients’ knowledge of potential pelvic floor changes associated with pregnancy and delivery

  • Mary T. McLennanEmail author
  • Clifford F. Melick
  • Beverly Alten
  • Jacqueline Young
  • Melanie R. Hoehn
Original Article


Physicians cite pelvic floor injury as a major reason for Cesarean section as their personal preferred delivery mode. This study was undertaken to determine whether patients receive information about possible pelvic floor complications of pregnancy/delivery. Day 1 post-partum women completed a 52-item questionnaire assessing information given during routine antenatal care. Pelvic floor and general questions were intermixed. Of the 232 patients, the mean age was 26.9 years, with 59.5% white, 32.8% African-American and 7.7% other. Most (84.5%) had at least grade 12 education. The following percentage of patients reported receiving no information about: Kegel exercises 46.1%; episiotomy 51.3%; urinary incontinence 46.6%; fecal incontinence 80.6%; change in vaginal caliber 72.8%; neuropathy 84.9%. Counseling on all of these issues occurred significantly less frequently than education on general pregnancy topics. Our results suggest that knowledge and instruction of pelvic floor risks is very much lacking and provide us with an impetus to develop educational tools.


Pelvic floor risks Pregnancy Knowledge 


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Copyright information

© International Urogynecology Journal 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary T. McLennan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Clifford F. Melick
    • 1
  • Beverly Alten
    • 1
  • Jacqueline Young
    • 1
  • Melanie R. Hoehn
    • 1
  1. 1.St. Louis University Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health, Division of Urogynecology, St. Mary’s HospitalSt. Louis University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA

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