What To Expect
Here to support you throughout your healing journey.
Congratulations on taking the first step towards Better pelvic health.
We understand that it may feel a little daunting consulting a pelvic health physiotherapist for the first time. It might help you to know that we deal with personal problems all the time and we are sensitive to any embarrassment that you may feel.
You will not have to reveal any details about your condition to reception or other staff unless you choose to. You will be seen in a private consultation room. Protecting your privacy and confidentiality is very important to us.
We have a parking area at the end of the driveway, a toilet that is accessible before you enter the building, and ramp access. You are welcome to bring a chaperone or support person, and there is room for a pram or capsule if you wish to bring your baby or young child into the consultation room with you.
What To Expect From Your Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy Appointment
An adult pelvic floor assessment often involves an internal examination, but this will only be done with your consent. We can find alternatives if this is difficult for you. If you do not want to have an internal examination, try to come in with at least some wee in your bladder. This gives us the option of doing a transabdominal ultrasound instead, which is completely non-invasive.
Bring any useful information you have, such as a medication list, reports/scans, or the names of any specialists or surgeries or procedures you have had in the past. It can be helpful to have a health summary from your GP, but this is not essential.
You do not need a referral to access our services.
You can claim your health fund rebate from our HICAPS terminal. If you have a Chronic Disease Management plan, and you bring the appropriate paperwork, you can claim your Medicare rebate at the time of consultation.
What To Bring To Your Appointment
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Frequently Asked Questions
A Women’s Health Physiotherapist treats a variety of conditions relating to the vulva, vagina, bladder, bowel and pelvic floor. As inclusive practitioners we also treat people from the LGBTQ+ community including transwomen and those who are gender non-confirming. Here we discuss conditions related generally to people assigned female at birth.
Conditions we commonly treat are pregnancy discomforts such as back pain, post-pregnancy discomforts such as mastitis, painful stitches, and abdominal muscle separation. We can help with prolapse, sexual pain and endometriosis.
Examples of conditions that are more common in women and people assigned female at birth include: incontinence, hip pain, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), constipation and evacuation difficulties, and pelvic pain.
At Penrith Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy, we prefer to call ourselves ‘Pelvic and Women’s Health Physiotherapists‘, because we can help anyone who has a pelvic floor, including men, transgender men, transgender women, and children, too!
Your Pelvic and Women’s Health physio will start the consultation by asking questions about your condition and how it affects your everyday life. We will discuss your goals, and together we will plan the best way forward. We will probably need to do some sort of physical examination, so you may wish to wear comfortable clothing, or clothing that can be removed or shifted to show the painful part. We may need to look at how you walk, or bend, and we may conduct special tests where we gently move the hip or apply pressures to the pelvis. Find out more about what to expect from your pelvic physiotherapy session.
A pelvic floor examination may include an inspection of the perineum (the outside of your undercarriage, from pubic bone to tailbone), and/or an internal examination. We do not need to insert any instruments to do an internal examination. You do not need to shave or wash or prepare in any way!
An internal examination does not need to be done if you experience internal pain or if you have bleeding. We can always find a work-around if internal examinations are difficult for you. We would hate someone to not get the help they need because of anxiety, pain, or embarrassment. One example of a work-around is an abdominal ultrasound where the ultrasound probe and gel are placed on your lower belly just above the bikini line. This is strictly an undies-on examination!
We cannot always say how many times you will need to see us until we have assessed your condition, but an acute pain condition can be helped immediately, or within 1-3 sessions over 1-2 weeks, while a longer standing problem might need 5-6 visits over 3-4 months. Your physio will discuss this at the end of your first appointment.
We think so, obviously! One of the things that keeps us in the game is seeing people recover or better manage conditions that were previously limiting their enjoyment of life. Our therapists find pelvic floor physiotherapy rewarding because we see the positive impact of our treatments every day. We love coming to work!
If you aren’t sure whether to take the first step, ask yourself this question: What is the cost of doing nothing? The cost of doing nothing might be:
- continuing to buy incontinence pads or liners for the rest of your life
- relying on expensive drugs (which can cost upwards of $60 per month and which can have side-effects such as a dry mouth, fuddled brain, constipation, insomnia, or increased blood pressure)
- avoiding outings and relationships
- living with fear, shame, embarrassment
- continuing to experience physical discomfort
- progressing to surgery or other medical interventions which have side-effects
For the most part, yes!
There are a few treatments that we would not offer to you, and some examination procedures that may need to be modified, but you can very much benefit from physiotherapy help in pregnancy. Your physiotherapist is a trained professional who can safely manage physical pain and discomfort in pregnancy.
Pregnancy is not a reason to delay or defer therapy. Just be sure to inform us if you are pregnant, if it is not yet obvious!
You don’t need to bring anything at all, but if you can collect the following information, we can help you more quickly:
- A list of your medications
- Any relevant reports (eg. surgery, urodynamics, ultrasound)
- If your medical history is complex, a Health Summary from your GP is useful. (This would
already be included in your paperwork if you have a Medicare Care Plan referral)
Street parking is usually available but we also have a carpark down the shared driveway. The practice entrance is at the rear.
These will be advised at the time of booking. The initial consultation takes 50-55 mins. Subsequent consultations take 25-30 minutes. If your problem is complex, your therapist may recommend you book a 45minute extended consultation for followups. If you attend the rooms and are in a Health Fund you may claim your rebate from our HICAPS terminal. If you have a Medicare Care Plan, see below.
If you are paying the full cost of the treatment yourself, or claiming from your Health Fund you DO NOT need a referral.
Medicare does not ordinarily cover physiotherapy. You only get a Medicare rebate if your GP has given you a CDM Plan (usually reserved for people with more than 2 chronic health conditions).
Please still attend. An internal exam is not always appropriate at the first appointment anyway. There are usually lots of other things we can do. If you wish your pelvic floor to be assessed without an internal exam, come in with a half full bladder so we can do an
Of course! We have ramp access for prams and our consultation rooms are big enough to fit the pram. Older children are welcome to come in with you or they can stay in the waiting room on their electronic devices.
If you believe your treatment fees should be covered by Workers Compensation, Third Party Insurance, or Dept Veteran’s Affairs, you need to let us know beforehand!
You are responsible for the full fee unless we have received written authorization from the relevant third-party payer (usually your case manager) prior to your attendance. In the case of DVA, a referral from any medical practitioner is sufficient.
If you have a valid Chronic Disease Management Plan from your GP, you can claim a Medicare rebate, currently $56. A gap fee still applies. Physio is not free, no matter what you may have been told! If you wish to claim your rebate from our terminal at the time of consultation will need to bring the Care Plan, your Medicare card, and a savings/debit card. If you wish to pay by credit card or cash you will have to submit your paid invoice to Medicare by post, in person, or via the MyGov app.