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Gynecology Services

Urogynecology and Treatment for Pelvic Floor Dysfunction in Portland, Oregon

Urogynecology is a special subset of gynecology focused on helping women with pelvic floor dysfunction, such as urinary or fecal incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse. You may want to consider seeing a WHA physician who specializes in urogynecology if you experience:

  • Stress urinary incontinence, or leakage of urine when pressure is put on the bladder. This can occur during exercise, or everyday activities like coughing or sneezing. It can be caused by damage or weakening of the pelvic muscles and tissues that support the bladder.
  • Overactive bladder and urinary urgency incontinence, or having to go to the bathroom frequently and/or urgently, and even the loss of urine due to overwhelming urge. Many women experience a combination of stress and urge incontinence—so it’s important to work with someone who has experience diagnosing and recommending treatments that address the underlying causes of each.
  • Drop (prolapse) of the uterus or other pelvic organs, which may feel like pressure or fullness in the vagina or pelvis or a bulge at the opening of the vagina.
  • Fecal incontinence, or accidental bowel leakage, which could feel like the sudden urge to have a bowel movement (urge incontinence) or not recognizing that you need to (passive incontinence).

What is the pelvic floor?

The pelvic floor refers to all the muscles, tissues and nerves in the lowest part of the pelvis responsible for supporting the bladder, vagina, rectum and other organs located in the pelvis. Pelvic floor dysfunction can occur when these muscles or tissues are injured or weakened. This can happen during childbirth or abdominal surgery, or over time as a result of strenuous activity, chronic conditions or age.

What are the treatments for pelvic floor dysfunction?

There are many options for helping to relieve or eliminate the symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction and your WHA physician will work closely with you to decide on a plan that best meets your needs. This could include:

  • Physical therapy to strengthen, relax or better coordinate the muscles of the pelvic floor.
  • Lifestyle or dietary modifications to reduce the causes of urinary and fecal incontinence.
  • Vaginal pessary, which is a plastic device inserted into the vagina to help support the pelvic organs and relieve the symptoms of incontinence.
  • Medication to treat urinary urgency incontinence, chronic constipation or diarrhea.
  • Office procedures to treat overactive bladder, urgency incontinence and stress incontinence. 
  • Surgery to support the organs that have dropped. Often, these surgeries can be performed in a minimally invasive way by going through the vagina or through several small incisions—either manually or using a surgical robot.

Urogynecology at WHA

If you’re experiencing symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction, you may want to consider seeing an OB/GYN physician with additional experience and/or training in urogynecology. He or she will evaluate your symptoms and help you decide on a course of treatment. You can ask your health care provider for a referral to one of the physicians below, or contact one of our locations directly to schedule an appointment.

Richard Hamilton, MD 
 Susan A. Hobson, M.D., Ph.D.  James Stempel, MD

Dr. Richard Hamilton
Lloyd District
(503) 734-1850

Dr. Susan Hobson
(503) 734-3535

Dr. Jim Stempel
Lloyd District
(503) 734-1850

Urogynecology Office Locations

Northwest Gynecology Center,
Lloyd District Office

700 NE Multnomah St,
Ste 1650 [map]
Portland, OR 97232
Ph: (503) 734-1850
Fax: (503) 734-1855

Northwest Gynecology Center,
Peterkort Office

9701 SW Barnes Road,
Suite 150 [map]
Portland, OR 97225
Ph: (503) 734-3535
Fax: (503) 734-3530

Urogynecology Resources