Their pain is affecting their life
When I first contacted Amanda I was suffering from prostatitis and was in a great deal of discomfort. I’d been given antibiotics for months, seen multiple urologists, and was in despair not knowing what to do, nothing was working.
When he came to see us, James was suffering from fairly typical prostatitis symptoms. He experienced a constant dull ache with occasional sharp pain flares in the area of his prostate, his bladder, testicles and perineum. He suffered from urinary frequency, even when his bladder was not full, and found it uncomfortable to sit on hard seats.
Prior to starting his current job, which involved international travel, James had been a keen athlete training 6 days a week. More recently he had returned to exercise in an attempt to alleviate his symptoms. However, he found that he could no longer tolerate gym workouts.
They have a diagnosis
James had been given an initial diagnosis of prostatitis by his GP. He had also seen multiple urologists, all of whom were agreed in their diagnosis of non-bacterial prostatitis and had treated him accordingly.
Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland, most commonly caused by a bacterial infection. If infection is not identified as the cause, then the diagnosis is non-bacterial prostatitis, which basically means that the cause is unknown. It becomes a chronic condition because there is no effective medical treatment.
However, in our experience, even a diagnosis of non-bacterial prostatitis is incorrect, as the actual cause of the symptoms is fascial restrictions in the hips and pelvic cavity. Because of the position of the prostate and bladder in the middle of this cavity, they can literally be squeezed to the point that they create referred pain and stop working properly.
This can cause the typical symptoms of prostatitis such as painful and incomplete urination, urinary frequency, painful intercourse, and pain in the hips, abdomen, perineum, penis and testicles.
They have been given a lot of medication
Anyone who presents to their GP with some or all of these typical prostatitis symptoms is given antibiotics as a matter of course. If this does not clear the symptoms, as in James’s case, people are often given repeated courses of antibiotics, even though the symptoms are not actually being caused by a bacterial infection. This floods their body with drugs and further weakens their already compromised immune system. In many cases, people find their symptoms get progressively worse, not better.
From his postural assessment, it was clear that James had a very tight mid-section. The area from his mid back down to his thighs looked tight and stuck, as if his body was stuck in a large corset. He had a forward tilt to his pelvis which indicated tight hip flexors and was most probably due to long periods of sitting on planes, something which he found could be very uncomfortable.
James had been in a high stress, high pressure job for five years which involved a lot of responsibility and international travel. Although he loved his job, the pressures had been getting to him and he had been diagnosed with anxiety and prescribed anti-depressants shortly before the prostatitis symptoms developed.
James noticed that his pain levels were directly linked to stress – the pain reduced when he had a period off work, but he when he returned the pain worsened. His symptoms very typically flared up with any stress or anxiety.
James’s case is very typical of many people we see. They have seen so many medical professionals and been given often conflicting opinions and advice, to the point that they no longer understand what is going on in their body and why. Often, the simple process of explaining fascia, the connectivity within the body, and how chronic pain can develop, is enough to relieve a lot of the anxiety people feel. And with this reduction in stress comes a relaxation of the whole mind and body, which in turn helps to reduce the pain.
In addition, in James’s case, using myofascial release to release the fascial restrictions around his pelvis and lower back was enough to relax the tissues in his pelvic cavity and create more space around the prostate and bladder. This relieved both his pain and the other symptoms such as urinary frequency.
We also explained the effects of different forms of exercise to James, especially the fact that strengthening gym work was counter productive for him as it was creating tension in chronically tight tissues. Instead we recommended he use the exercises we had given him and start yoga, both of which he found to be extremely effective as well as enjoyable.
Amanda was the first person to help me understand why this tension had built up in my pelvic area, and gradually over 6 sessions of myofascial release, she helped undo this tension and start the healing process. It was remarkable how quickly things started to turn around after a few sessions, and with the additional exercises to do at home, I’ve gone on to make a full recovery.