Pelvic Girdle Pain in Pregnancy 

Pregnancy related pelvic girdle pain (PrPGP)

PGP is a Collection of signs and symptoms of discomfort and pain in the pelvic and lower back area, including musculoskeletal pain radiating to the upper thighs and perineum during pregnancy.   Pelvic girdle pain usually resolves spontaneously after the birth, although symptoms may recur during subsequent pregnancies.


It is estimated that between 33% and 50% of pregnant women report PGP before 20 weeks gestation, with 60-70% reporting some degree of PGP by late pregnancy.


A recent study found that women with PrPGP:

  • Often feel exhausted, powerless and out of control
  • Risk abusing analgesics, especially if limited social support
  • Struggle to carry out general everyday tasks including housework
  • Worry about safety issues with their other children (Rick when carrying babies or not being able to run after toddles)
  • Sometimes need to cease work resulting in social isolation

Despite this, research as also found that in Australia, clinicians don’t regard PrPGP as a serious condition and as a result only 25% of women are referred for treatment.


What Causes PrPGP:

  • Hormonal alterations during pregnancy causing ligament laxity — oestrogen
  • Increased pressure on your pelvis
  • Changes to your posture


Managing your PrPGP: The Australian pregnancy care guidelines suggest the following

  • Keep your knees together when rolling in bed
  • Avoid standing and walking for prolonged periods of times
  • Avoid standing on one leg
  • Reduce heavy lifting and pushing and pulling activities
  • Get in and out of the car with knees together
  • Apply heat to painful areas
  • Wear low-heeled shoes


Tips to reduced your PrPGP:

  • Consult with a women’s health physiotherapist
  • Use pillows when sleeping
  • Wear a compression garment or support belt (as per physiotherapist)
  • Use home massage or stretches to release tight muscles (as shown by your physiotherapist)
  • Sit down when getting dressed of a morning