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Radiology. 2008 Aug;248(2):518-30. doi: 10.1148/radiol.2482070974. Epub 2008 Jun 23.

Pelvic floor dysfunction: assessment with combined analysis of static and dynamic MR imaging findings.

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Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Kaser El Aini Street, Cairo, Egypt.



To prospectively analyze static and dynamic magnetic resonance (MR) images simultaneously to determine whether stress urinary incontinence (SUI), pelvic organ prolapse (POP), and anal incontinence are associated with specific pelvic floor abnormalities.


This study had institutional review board approval, and informed consent was obtained from all participants. There were 59 women: 15 nulliparous study control women (mean age, 25.6 years) and 44 patients (mean age, 43.4 years), who were divided into four groups according to chief symptom. Static T2-weighted turbo spin-echo images were used in evaluating structural derangements; functional dynamic (cine) balanced fast-field echo images were used in detecting functional abnormalities and recording five measurements of supporting structures. Findings on both types of MR images were analyzed together to determine the predominant defect. Analysis of variance and the Bonferroni t test were used to compare groups.


In the four patient groups, POP was associated with levator muscle weakness in 16 (47%) of 34 patients, with level I and II fascial defects in seven (21%) of 34 patients, and with both defects in 11 (32%) of 34 patients. SUI was associated with defects of the urethral supporting structures in 25 (86%) of 29 patients but was not associated with bladder neck descent. Levator muscle weakness may lead to anal incontinence in the absence of anal sphincter defects. Measurements of supporting structures were significant (P < .05) in the identification of pelvic floor laxity.


Combined analysis of static and dynamic MR images of patients with pelvic floor dysfunction allowed identification of certain structural abnormalities with specific dysfunctions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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