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Endometriosis and Persistent Pelvic Pain

Endometriosis and persistent pelvic pain are serious health issues affecting women and people assigned female at birth in Tasmania and throughout Australia. It is estimated that at least one in seven women and people assigned female at birth in Australia experience persistent pelvic pain.

Pelvic pain is pain below your belly button and above your legs. It’s pain that you feel on most days for six months or more. This area includes your bowel, bladder, ovaries, uterus and more.

It’s important to know what’s normal and what’s not – and when you should seek help.

Family Planning Tasmania offer a pathway to treat these conditions holistically.

Our pathway is designed to support and empower patients as they journey through life living with these conditions.

We’re an experienced multidisciplinary team, consisting of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and psychologists.

Our pathway puts each individual patient at the centre of their care. The goal is to find solutions and strategies to help them manage their pain in the most effective way.

You can see a description of the different steps on the pathway below.

Is this pathway suitable for me?

Persistent pelvic pain can have various causes. Endometriosis occurs when tissue similar to the tissue that normally lines the uterus (endometrium) grows outside of the uterus, leading to inflammation, scarring, and pain.

You should consider booking an appointment if you have multiple symptoms from below:

  • Pain during periods
  • Pain during or after sex
  • Pain on or around ovulation
  • Pain with bowel movements
  • Pain with urination
  • Needing to urinate more often
  • Pelvic pain that occurs outside of your period
  • Heavy bleeding or irregular bleeding
  • Fatigue
  • Diarrhoea or constipation


Your pathway will begin with our doctors. They will take a thorough history of your experiences, and use that to guide the examinations and investigations to understand you better.

This work will be the basis of your medical management plan. This might include:

  • Pain education and lifestyle changes
  • Hormonal therapy/contraception
  • Referral for laparoscopic surgery
  • Referral for physical therapy, such as pelvic floor physiotherapy
  • Referral to other specialists, such as gastroenterologists and dieticians, to help treat co-occurring conditions

Working towards a diagnosis can be an important part of your journey. The most common diagnostic tests include a pelvic exam, ultrasound, or laparoscopy. Most of these will require referral onwards, and your doctor can explain everything to you if you’re considering this together.

There are several other medical treatment options available to manage the symptoms, which can be discussed with your doctor in the appointments.


Physiotherapists work with patients on pain science education, physical techniques, and exercises to assist patients to manage their pelvic pain.

We assess muscle, bladder and bowel function. From our assessment we develop a plan to address central sensitisation, and any pelvic floor muscle, bladder, and bowel dysfunction.

Our physiotherapists offer multiple sessions, and have a person-centred approach that works with exactly your needs and your comfort levels to help you reach your goals.


We offer psychology appointments with support from the University of Tasmania Psychology Clinic.

The psychology clinic can offer sessions in-person (Hobart and Launceston) or via telehealth (statewide). These appointments are designed to help you manage your pain with psychological techniques.

Psychology sessions for persistent pelvic pain may focus specifically on your pain or on the areas of your life that are influenced by your pelvic pain (e.g., emotional wellbeing, relationships, work and study or other life roles, body image, sexual wellbeing).

More information

There are some fantastic resources out there to support people living with endometriosis.

Find out more information and additional resources:

The below brochure and poster will tell you all you need to know about our pathway. Please feel free to forward, print and distribute to anyone that might benefit.

Endometriosis and Persistent Pelvic Pain brochure

If you would like to discuss the pathway above, or if you need assistance, advice for any other sexual or reproductive health issue, please make an appointment with one of our friendly doctors.

Endometriosis and Persistent Pelvic Pain poster A4

The Persistent Pelvic Pain initiative is supported by funding from Primary Health Tasmania (Tasmania PHN) through the Australian Government’s Primary Health Networks program.

This content is provided for general information and education purposes only and does not take into account individual circumstances. It is not to be relied on in substitution for specific advice from a medical professional and Family Planning Tasmania does not accept responsibility for such use. Family Planning Tasmania has taken every effort to ensure that the information is up to date and accurate, however information and knowledge is subject to change. Family Planning Tasmania advises that you always consult a medical professional for individual advice.

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