Physical Therapy Reduces Painful Vaginal Stenosis

Although radiation therapy successfully treated 64-year-old Mary Davis’ anal cancer, it left her with painful scar tissue in the vaginal and anal areas. Often a side effect of radiation and surgery in the genital area, the build of scar tissue can cause narrowing and shortening of the vaginal canal. The condition is called vaginal stenosis. It can make intercourse painful, and in some cases, impossible. For Mary, regular physical therapy at the Women’s Center for Pelvic Health has helped to keep the scar tissue flexible and the vaginal canal open. “Without the physical therapy, everything sort of closes up,” she says. “Working with the therapist has helped to keep the scar tissue from tightening. It’s something I could not do on my own.”

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