In my previous post, I mentioned that my pelvic muscles seem stubbornly stuck at a tension level of 10. At times, I can get it down to 4 or 3, but it always climbs back up. The physical therapist said that because the muscles are used to being tight, they don’t like to relax, so we need to jolt them out of this pattern. She suggested trying something new. Since Kegel exercises help my pelvic floor to relax, she suggested that stimulating the muscles might help to relax them even more.
For my biofeedback sessions, I have an electrode about two inches long and half an inch in diameter that I stick in my rectum. When I squeeze my pelvic floor muscles, the muscle tension creates an electrical current in the sensor that indicates how much tension is in the muscle. For the new therapy, she said that we would reverse that process. The unit would create electricity in the sensor and the sensor would cause my muscles to contract. Electroshock therapy for the pelvic floor (my term, not hers!)
I was a little bit hesitant. Every outcome of this exercise that I could think of was unpleasant. When she turned it on, I could picture my anus constricting and tightening so much that I screamed and writhed in pain. Kind of like an anal taser. I pictured stomach and abdominal cramps worse than food poisoning and the flu together. Fried from the inside out, like an egg in the microwave. The physical therapist, however, assured me that it was going to be nothing like that. So at the end of the session, she connected another little device to the sensor that was already in my rectum. When she turned it on, the sensation in my anus was something between a tingling and 1000 little pin pricks. It went up and down in 10 second intervals. It wasn’t painful, but it wasn’t remotely pleasurable. She said it would go for 10 minutes.
It was kind of hard to endure at the beginning. When it would first start to ramp up again, it was a little painful until it became more like a tingling feeling. Eventually, I realized that if I relaxed as much as possible, I could avoid the initial painful feeling. Eventually, I tried to crank it up a little, but apparently my ten minutes was up, and the device turned off.
I really couldn’t feel anything different. That was the last thing we did and the physical therapist moved on to another patient, so we didn’t measure again either. I’m not sure how much benefit I got from it.
That night, my wife and I had sex. I did OK, but not great, so I didn’t notice any real improvement, and certainly nothing different from after my previous appointments. I’ll report back next week and see what the physical therapist says. Maybe I’ll try to crank up the stimulation earlier.