Feeling unwell or injured? Make sure you choose the right service.
Penny Nixon
Senior Physiotherapist

I was introduced to this profession by my aunt, who was a specialist physiotherapist at Liverpool Hospital.  It’s a fabulous job which has allowed me to travel, continually learn and challenge myself while exploring new treatment avenues.

I became interested in women’s health issues after treating many patients suffering with back problems and stress incontinence after giving birth. It is not always possible to choose the type of birth you have, but there are many things that women can do to help themselves before and after having a baby.

The role has evolved and I now treat both men and women with continence problems, where often the pelvic floor muscles need strengthening. I link in with Mark Slack’s Urogynaecology team to treat these patients and am present in the clinic. At the other end of the spectrum I treat patients with chronic pelvic pain, who often have an overworking pelvic floor and need to learn to relax these muscles.

Stress incontinence is a condition when you leak on activity, coughing, sneezing, laughing and lifting.  It is extremely embarrassing and many women will not admit to having a problem unless asked directly. In physio we will examine them to ensure they are working the muscles correctly and encourage them to do pelvic floor exercises at least three times a day. It can be difficult to remember to do these regularly, so linking to an activity that you do often, such as feeding your baby or after visiting the toilet, can be very beneficial.

Urgency is another common and debilitating problem where the bladder is misbehaving and you need to rush to the toilet many times a day. We encourage patients to complete a fluid volume chart so we can assess input and output and then we can retrain the bladder.  We encourage patients to reduce consumption of caffeine, fizzy drinks and alcohol, but drink six glasses of water or decaffeinated drink a day, and to visit the toilet no more than every three or four hours.

Pelvic floor training is so important; every woman should be doing these exercises daily as part of looking after their general wellbeing. We hope the video on this website will help explain the process.