Introduction and hypothesis: This study aims to examine the relationship between pelvic floor muscle function (PFMF) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) in a general female population. Methods: Cross-sectional study on women aged 45-85 years. Validated questionnaires were used to assess pelvic floor muscle function. POP and PFMF were evaluated with vaginal examination. For statistical analysis chi-squared test for trend and analysis of variance were used. Results: Response rate to the questionnaire was 62.7% (1,869/2,979). No significant differences were found in muscle strength and endurance during voluntary muscle contraction between the POP stages. Women with POP stages I and II were significantly less able to achieve effective involuntary muscle contraction during coughing (38.3% and 37.7%) than women without POP (75.2%). Conclusion: Involuntary contraction of the PFM during coughing (that resulted in stabilization of the perineum) was significantly weaker in the women with POP stage I and II than in the women without POP.

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International Urogynecology Journal: and pelvic floor dysfunction
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Slieker-ten Hove, M., Pool-Goudzwaard, A., Eijkemans, R., Steegers-Theunissen, R., Burger, C., & Vierhout, M. (2010). Pelvic floor muscle function in a general population of women with and without pelvic organ prolapse. International Urogynecology Journal: and pelvic floor dysfunction, 21(3), 311–319. doi:10.1007/s00192-009-1037-0