Urogynecology Expert Forum
swollen abdomen
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Questions in the Urogynecology forum are answered by Bruce Crawford, MD, J. Kyle Mathews, MD, and other medical professionals and experts. Topics covered include overactive bladders, bladder pain, fallen/drooping bladder, bowel urgency, bowel prolapse, cystitis, incontinence, pain with intercourse, rectal prolapse, surgery, urinary urgency, and uterine prolapse.

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swollen abdomen

Hi, I have been having a distended abdomen for the past year - about 6 inches bigger than normal. After stopping birth control four months ago  I noticed my stomach started going down and also noticed that when i'm on my menstrual period is when it goes down. I've been to a doctor and had a transabdominal ultrasound and everything seems fine according to my doctor. My symptoms are frequency and urgency and I feel as if my bladder doesn't completely empty. Could it be caused by the birth control? Such as estrogen dominance?  
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Your bladder symptoms may be musculoskeletal, related to your pelvic floor and abdominal wall muscles. The bladder urgency/frequency may be caused by trigger points in the pelvic floor and sometimes the abdominal wall muscles. This is provided your urine culture is negative, and there is no other gyn or bladder pathology going on (e.g., fibroids, urethral diverticulum). If your pelvic ultrasound was "negative", and the remainder of your gyn workup was also negative, consider evaluation by a pelvic floor physical therapist, who can help you rehabilitate your abdominal wall and pelvic floor muscles, which may improve your bladder problem considerably. Regarding your stomach "going down", some women report gaining weight with the pill, but I do not recall if any definitive data on that count, or if the weight gets lost after stopping the pill.
You could take that question up with the reproductive endocrine forum.

Dr. Hoyte


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