Pelvic floor muscle (PFM) training has received Level-A evidence rating in the treatment of stress urinary incontinence (SUI) in women, based on meta-analysis of numerous randomized control trials (RCTs) and is recommended in many published guidelines. However, the actual regimen of PFM training used varies widely in these RCTs. Hence, to date, the optimal PFM training regimen for achieving continence remains unknown and the following questions persist: how often should women attend PFM training sessions and how many contractions should they perform for maximal effect? Is a regimen of strengthening exercises better than a motor control strategy or functional retraining? Is it better to administer a PFM training regimen to an individual or are group sessions equally effective, or better? Which is better, PFM training by itself or in combination with biofeedback, neuromuscular electrical stimulation, and/or vaginal cones? Should we use improvement or cure as the ultimate outcome to determine which regimen is the best? The questions are endless. As a starting point in our endeavour to identify optimal PFM training regimens, the aim of this study is (a) to review the present evidence in terms of the effectiveness of different PFM training regimens in women with SUI and (b) to discuss the current literature on PFM dysfunction in SUI women, including the up-to-date evidence on skeletal muscle training theory and other factors known to impact on women's participation in and adherence to PFM training. Neurourol. Urodynam. Neurourol. Urodynam. 30:746-753, 2011. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
- pelvic floor muscle training
- stress urinary incontinence