Pelvic girdle pain – part 2: qualitative results from a mixed-methods service evaluation; women’s experience of manual therapy treatment during pregnancy
Pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain (PGP) is a musculoskeletal condition that affects 20% of gravid women. Pelvic girdle pain can have a marked impact on an individual’s quality of life, sleep and functional activities, and can result in absenteeism from work. Part 1 of this paper presented the quantitative results of a mixed-methods service evaluation of the introduction of a manual therapy approach to usual care. There is a paucity of literature on patients’ experience of receiving manual therapy for PGP during pregnancy. Therefore, the second aim of the service evaluation was to gain an insight into women’s experiences of manual therapy treatment for PGP. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with seven women who had received anual therapy, and thematic framework analysis was applied to the data. Qualitative analysis revealed five distinct themes: living with PGP; practicalities of entering the physiotherapy system; patient expectation pre-treatment; response to manual therapy; and relationship with physiotherapist. Overall, women reported reduced pain and improved function after receiving manual therapy alongside usual care.
Keywords: manual therapy, patient experience, pelvic girdle pain, service evaluation,