Get exceptional care for common conditions at the Pelvic Floor & Continence Center at St. Joseph's/Candler
Urinary and bowel incontinence, pelvic pain and other related disorders are highly treatable, yet most people suffer in silence. You don't have to. At the St. Joseph's/Candler Pelvic Floor & Continence Center, we want you to know you are not alone, and we're here to help.
We offer diagnosis, evaluation and therapy for all kinds of pelvic, urinary and bowel disorders. A dedicated team of board-certified urogynecologists, nurse practitioners, licensed physical therapists and other specialists offer private consultations and intervention, properly evaluating each patient’s condition and recommending the most effective treatment plan. In most cases, incontinence and other pelvic conditions can be cured or successfully managed.
Are you asking yourself right now, 'Do I suffer from incontinence?' Consider your responses to these questions:
- Do you urinate eight times or more during a 24-hour period?
- Do you often have strong, sudden urges to urinate or defecate?
- Do you have accidents before getting to the bathroom?
- Do you get up two or more times at night to use the restroom?
- Do you use protection because of leaking you don’t notice?
- Do you wear protection because you are not able to get to the bathroom in time?
- Do you leak urine or feces when you cough, laugh or lift something?
If you answered Yes to any of these questions, you may suffer from incontinence. And, we can help.
Who we help
The Pelvic Floor & Continence Center provides assessment and treatment for a broad range of conditions, including the following:
- Urinary incontinence
- Bowel incontinence
- Pelvic pain
- Interstitial cystitis
- Levator ani syndrome
- Urinary and bowel retention
Meet our team
You’ll be relieved to know that our physicians at St. Joseph’s/Candler have conversations with patients about often-considered uncomfortable topics all the time. It’s not surprising or embarrassing for them, and they’ve helped patients with bowel and urinary incontinence for years. It’s their goal to help you get back to your normal life, the activities you love and not have to worry about bathroom problems.
Our team at the Pelvic Floor & Continence Center is led by three physicians with decades of experience treating pelvic health and incontinence.
Dr. Mark Blankenship received his medical degree at the Medical College of Georgia. He completed his General Surgery residency at Memorial Health University . He completed a fellowship in Colon and Rectal Surgery at the University
of Texas Health Science Center in Houston Texas.
He is board certified in General Surgery and is also board certified in the subspecialty of Colon and Rectal Surgery.
Dr. Blankenship is trained in the da Vinci Xi and Si systems and performs minimally invasive procedures for malignant and benign disease. He is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons.
Dr. Barry Schlafstein graduated cum laude from Cornell University. He received his medical degree from The University of Miami School of Medicine, earning admission to the elite AOA medical honor society. Dr. Schlafstein completed his internship, residency and chief residency in gynecology and obstetrics at John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.
Dr. Schlafstein is a board certified Diplomate of The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and has sub-specialty board certification in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (Urogynecology), becoming one of the first physicians in the nation to achieve board certification status as an OB/GYN sub-specialist in urogynecology. Dr. Schlafstein has been in practice for more than 20 years and has devoted his professional life to understanding and treating the unique gynecologic needs of women.
Dr. Joseph T. Stubbs III received his medical degree from the Medical College of Georgia and completed his OB/GYN residency at Memorial Medical Center in Savannah, Georgia in 1997. He received his fellowship training at Emory University in Atlanta. The first was Pelvic Surgery Fellowship and the second was the Urogynecology/Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery Fellowship.
Dr. Stubbs is the only double fellowship-trained, board-certified Urogynecologist in the region. Dr. Stubbs is trained in the use of the da Vinci Xi and Si Surgical Systems in performing hysterectomies and various urogynecological procedures for the correction of pelvic organ prolapse.
Our experienced team also includes a dedicated nurse practitioner and physical therapist that works day-to-day with patients.
Along with a thorough history and physical exam, our team may recommend urodynamics testing to determine the cause of your frequent urination. A urodynamic test measures the relationship of pressure and volume in the bladder, basically the bladder's ability to hold urine and then release it completely without starting and stopping. This test measures:
- Nerve and muscle function
- Pressure around and in the bladder
- Flow rates and other factors
Urodynamics testing is given to both men and women.
The Pelvic Floor & Continence Center offers pelvic physical therapy with a specially trained physical therapist in a private one-on-one setting. The physical therapist creates individualized treatment programs to improve pelvic floor muscle function, gain control over symptoms and reduce the need for medication and possibly surgery.
Treatments may include:
- Pelvic Floor Exercises. These exercises (also known as kegel exercises) can help both men and women gain more control over their bowel movements and urination. These exercises could help improve the strength of the sphincter and pelvic floor muscles and improve bowel control and bladder control.
- Biofeedback. Depending on your symptoms and level of comfort, your physical therapist may gently employ electrodes to measure your pelvic-floor muscle activity. The biofeedback obtained can help make you more aware of the correct way to use your pelvic-floor muscles.
- Muscle strengthening exercises. Your physical therapist will teach you specific exercises to stretch and strengthen other important muscles that help support proper bowel and bladder function.
- Electrical stimulation. Your physical therapist may apply gentle electrical stimulation to help improve your awareness of your muscle function.
Fortunately, there’s no need to endure the emotional and physical stress of incontinence or pelvic pain. Call our Center to request assistance with an appointment or ask your Primary Care Physician for a referral to the Pelvic Floor & Continence Center in order to receive the most comprehensive, competent care for this highly treatable problem.
SJ/C Pelvic Floor & Continence Center
5354 Reynolds Street, Suite 318
Professional Office Building
Savannah, Ga. 31405