University of Colorado Pelvic Pain Clinic

Chronic pelvic pain in women is defined as ongoing pain in the pelvic region that persists for six months or longer. The discomfort caused by chronic pelvic pain may range in severity from mildly irritating to completely debilitating, and it may worsen during sexual intercourse, bowel movements, urination or during the menstrual cycle. Chronic pelvic pain is as prevalent as asthma, and the University of Colorado offers this dedicated clinic to help those women who need additional care and time to get a full evaluation.

Diagnosing the source of chronic pelvic pain can be tricky because it can be caused by a host of underlying conditions including endometriosis, uterine fibroids, disorders of the digestive system, urinary dysfunction and more. Like all chronic pain, chronic pelvic pain may be caused or worsened by psychological disorders such as depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Due to the complexity of chronic pelvic pain, our clinic focuses on evaluating each patient comprehensively. Providers in this clinic look for gynecologic as well as non-gynecologic sources of pain, and coordinate with each patient’s general gynecologist to develop a tailored treatment plan.  Patients in this clinic continue to see their gynecologists for routine gynecologic care like annual exams, pap tests, etc.

In our clinic, we utilize physical therapy, compounding pharmacies (tailor-made prescription medications), trigger point injections, and other alternative therapies to treat pain. This is not a typical chronic pain clinic as we do not prescribe nor do we manage chronic narcotic or opioid therapies.

If gynecologic surgical intervention is necessary, CU is well-equipped to perform a full range of procedures using state-of-the-art, minimally invasive surgical technologies.

What causes chronic pelvic pain in women?

Causes of chronic pelvic pain in women include (but are not limited to):

  • Endometriosis
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Pelvic floor disorders
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Psychological disorders
  • History of sexual abuse.

In some cases, a definitive cause cannot be identified. We are still able to develop a treatment plan for managing the pain even if a source cannot be pinpointed.

Who does the Pelvic Pain Clinic treat?

We treat women who have had pelvic pain for six months or longer. In some cases, women have been diagnosed by their gynecologist or other doctor with an underlying condition that is causing or contributing to their chronic pain. In other cases, a patient may not be aware of the underlying cause, and we work with her to identify it and formulate an approach to treatment.

Who works at the Pelvic Pain Clinic and how can I schedule an appointment?

CU has three OB/GYNs with special interest in treating women with chronic pain. Each are members of the International Pelvic Pain Society. To set up an appointment with one of our chronic pelvic pain specialists, give us a call or request an appointment online.

Contact Us Schedule an Appointment

Dr. Amy Markese

Dr. Amy Markese

Dr. Amy Markese chose obstetrics and gynecology because it allows her to care for women throughout their lives and to really get to know each patient. Listening to each patient’s personal situation and working with her to develop a treatment plan is not only one of Dr. Markese’s favorite aspects of obstetrics and gynecology, but she also sites this process as one of her greatest strengths in patient care.
Dr. Brittney Bastow

Dr. Brittney Bastow

Dr. Bastow believes that by listening to her patients and validating their concerns that she, the patient and their family members are better able to work as a team toward a final goal of health and wellness. Dr. Bastow focuses on overall women's health, pregnancy and childbirth and obstetric surgeries including minimally invasive hysterectomy.
Dr. James Mosher

Dr. James Mosher

Dr. James Mosher is a Senior Clinical Instructor of Obstetrics and Gynecology with a focus on pelvic pain and menopausal medicine. Dr. Mosher also recommends non-traditional treatments such as acupuncture to his patients.
Dr. John Slocumb

Dr. John Slocumb

Dr. Mosher is a Clinical Professor at the University of Colorado Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology with a specialty in chronic pelvic pain. Dr. Slocumb also focuses his practice on pregnancy and reproduction as well as general women’s health.