The pelvic floor is made of very thin musculature which helps keep the pelvic viscera (organs) in place. Despite their thin size, they are very important! On this episode we define the pelvic floor, discuss its impact on urinary continence and incontinence and outline steps we can all take to strengthen these muscles!

Guest Panelists

Associate Professor Helena Frawley is a pelvic floor physiotherapy researcher. She leads the women’s, men’s and pelvic health physiotherapy research program at Monash University, and is the Head of Allied Health Research and Education at Cabrini Health. Helena completed her PhD at The University of Melbourne in 2008, and gained Fellowship of the Australian College of Physiotherapists in 2011, as a Specialist Continence and Women’s Health Physiotherapist.
Her research is focused on pelvic floor muscle measurement studies and conservative therapies to treat pelvic floor dysfunction: pelvic organ prolapse, pelvic pain, incontinence and pelvic floor problems following pelvic surgery, including for pelvic cancer. Her other research interest is translational research, including implementation of clinical practice guidelines.
Helena is active internationally in this area of work, as a member of several international working groups and committees. She is committed to improving outcomes in people with pelvic floor dysfunction.

Dr. Anna Rosamilia completed her studies in Obstetrics & Gynaecology in 1995, and continued with her subspecialist training in urogynaecology from 1996 to 1998 working at Monash Medical Centre, the Mercy Hospital for Women and the Royal Women’s Hospital. In 2001, as part of the fellowship, she was awarded a PhD from Monash University for her thesis “Studies of the Pathogenesis of Interstitial Cystitis”.

Assoc Prof Rosamilia is an examiner for the Urogynaecology Subspeciality of the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists and for the undergraduate medical student examinations in O &G at Monash University. She is actively involved in the training of current and future generation of specialists. She contributes to research with a focus on the causes and treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction in particular urinary stress incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. She has held leadership roles in organisations such as the International Urogynaecological Association (IUGA) , the Australasian Gynaecological Endoscopic and Surgical Society (AGES) and the Continence Foundation of Australia . She is currently head of the Pelvic Floor Unit at Monash Health, a role she has held since 2008. She has a private practice which is located at Cabrini Hospital, Malvern and Waverley Private Hospital, Mt Waverley.

Topics Covered

  • Impact of pelvic floor musculature on urinary continence
  • Pelvic floor exercises

Links to related resources

Episode 6: Pelvic Floor and Urinary Incontinence