Barbara Roberts, Homeopath

Symphis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)

I recently asked about what sort of pregnancy related conditions you would like info about homeopathic treatment for. Symphis Pubis Dysfunction came up, and took a bit of research for me to write the post as it is not something I have personal experience with. Hope this helps those of you who do end up in pain with this!

Symphis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)

Relaxin is a hormone produced by the Corpus Luteum after ovulation and is believed to help the fertilised ovum implant into the uterine wall. It then is produced by the placenta, and has an important job in relaxing joints, muscles and tendons, particularly in the pelvic region, which will allow baby’s head to travel through the pelvic girdle. Relaxin is why pregnant women can be more prone to injuring joints in exercise as they are more flexible than usual.

Unfortunately for some, sometimes Relaxin does its job too well. While Pelvic Girdle Pain can affect up to 80% of pregnant women to some degree, a smaller number (around 30%) experience a more severe form called Symphis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD).

SPD is mainly characterised by pain. There can be shooting pains in the symphis pubis, or pains radiating into the lower abdomen, back, groin, perineum or thighs. Pain on movement- walking, bending forward, getting up from sitting, turning in bed, going down stairs or standing on one leg, and pain is better for rest. Sex may also be painful. In addition to pain there may be a clicking or grinding felt or heard from the symphis pubis, and often fatigue.

There is not a lot of published homeopathic data on SPD, but the following remedies may help with symptoms in addition to other measures described below. I have seen a combination of remedies prescribed- Sepia three times daily for 2 days and Arnica and Hypericum three times daily for five days – I will discuss these remedies individually below. If two or three remedies seem to describe what you are experiencing then combine or alternate them. If Murex sounds better but you don’t have it, try Sepia or something you do have while you wait for the Murex to arrive.

Sepia- a well known women’s remedy it has an affinity for hormones and the pelvic area, emotionally they are worn out and just want family to go away.

Arnica – a classic remedy for any trauma, it has feelings of bruised pain where even a soft bed feels hard and hurts to lie on. They may also have a “I’m fine, don’t touch me” attitude.

Hypericum – this has an affinity for nerves, in particular shooting pains

Ruta Grav – for ligaments and tendons this may support the movement of the pelvis

Trillium – as if pelvis is broken, wants it to be bound together. Better bending forward, worse sitting erect

Rhus Tox – stiff when beginning to move, after this movement loosens you and is easier until they over do it. The analogy is a rusty gate which is stiff to start, then moves freely until overused when it’s back to stiff.

Murex – feels as if bones are all getting loose.

Aesculus – feels like they are going lame, or that pelvis will give way while walking, must sit down but feels even better lying down. There can also be sticking pains with this remedy, and may have haemorrhoids.

Other remedies that may help include Calc, Calc Phos, Kali Carb, Cinnabaris, or Xanthoxylum. If none of the ones above sound right or you get no relief then have a look at the remedy picture of these four to see if they are a better fit, or see a Homeopath.

Other important things with SPD
Wear a Belly band. This is a physical support to help keep everything where it’s supposed to be. A stretchy tubi grip style compression and a smiley belt is often used in combination.
See a chiropractor. They specialise in the alignment of bones and will help both during pregnancy and recovery afterward.
Pelvic floor exercises and pelvic floor tilts may help strengthen the muscles and reduce pain.

Don’t forget to discuss with your midwife or primary care practitioner.

Share this post