This guideline covers the prevention, assessment and non-surgical management of pelvic floor dysfunction in women aged 12 and over. It aims to raise awareness and help women to reduce their risk of pelvic floor dysfunction. For women who have pelvic floor dysfunction, the guideline recommends interventions based on their specific symptoms.
NICE has also produced a guideline on urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse in women aged 18 and over.
This guideline uses the term 'women' throughout, but this should be taken to include those who do not identify as women but who have female pelvic organs.
This guideline includes recommendations on:
- raising awareness of pelvic floor dysfunction
- risk factors
- communication and providing information
- assessment in primary care
- non-surgical management
Who is it for?
- Healthcare professionals
- Commissioners and providers
- Education providers (recommendation 1.1.8)
- Women using services, and their families and carers
Guideline development process
This guideline was developed by the National Guideline Alliance (NGA), which is hosted by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG). This guideline was developed with complete independence from RCOG governance.
The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals and practitioners are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or the people using their service. It is not mandatory to apply the recommendations, and the guideline does not override the responsibility to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual, in consultation with them and their families and carers or guardian.
All problems (adverse events) related to a medicine or medical device used for treatment or in a procedure should be reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency using the Yellow Card Scheme.
Local commissioners and providers of healthcare have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual professionals and people using services wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with complying with those duties.
Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.