Pelvic floor dysfunction and urinary incontinence (UI) may be observed in a wide variety of conditions with particular impact and concerns in older adults. The physical therapy assessment for this concern may include interview, physical examination, diagnosis, and prognosis. Physical therapy interventions presented utilize traditional muscle and soft tissue techniques. A combination of exercise, behavioral, and educational interventions are discussed in this course with an emphasis on providing a comprehensive approach to care. The purpose of this course is to provide an opportunity for understanding the prevalence and etiologies of common disorders of the pelvic floor along with behavioral and exercise strategies for symptom management with a focus on UI.

Carol Figuers, MS, PT, EdD, received her BA in Biology from Wake Forest University, her MS in Physical Therapy from Duke University, and her EdD in Education from NC State University. She is currently Professor in the Duke University Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. Dr. Figuers has helped to develop a large Women’s Health Physical Therapy environment at Duke. She served as the director of the Duke Women’s Health Residency Program and provided clinical services to the clinical practice in women’s health. She provides lectures and laboratory courses in women’s health physical therapy at Duke, including a specialty elective, and teaches this content at several other DPT educational programs nationally. Dr. Figuers’ current areas of research and scholarship interests are in Women’s Health. She has received funding for projects which have resulted in both presentations and publications, particularly focusing on pelvic floor dysfunction in female athletes as well as physical activity in postpartum women. She has authored numerous articles and textbook chapters on women’s health physical therapy. She is a longtime member of APTA Pelvic Health, formerly the Section on Women’s Health where she has served on numerous section committees and task forces. In her free time, Carol enjoys swimming, walking her dog, and enjoying good books and movies.

Christina Holladay, PT, DPT, WCS, received her BA from Emory University, her MA from Vanderbilt University, and her DPT from Duke University. She completed the Women’s Health Physical Therapy Residency at Duke, and currently is a Physical Therapist at the Duke University Health System. Christina is a mentor in the Women’s Health Physical Therapy Residency. She has presented lectures on Women’s Health and Oncology topics for the Duke DPT program, as well as APTA CSM, North Carolina (NC) Physical Therapy Association conferences, and NC Area Health Education Centers educational programs. Christina is a member of the APTA, as well as the Pelvic Health, Oncology, and Orthopedic academies. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her family, travelling, gardening, and cooking for family and friends.


Joseph Fiedor, PT, DPT, MS, MBA

Erin Reddinger, PT, DPT, Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Geriatric Physical Therapy

Barbara Billek-Sawhney, PT, EdD, DPT, Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Geriatric Physical Therapy

Course Code:


Completion Instructions

Please read the monograph (pdf) and complete the assessment with at least a 70% score. Complete the course evaluation and download and save your certificate.

Course level


Date Opened



Carol Figuers, PT, EdD; Christina Holladay, PT, DPT, WCS

Learning objectives

Upon completion of this course, the course participant will be able to:

1. Identify and define the different types of pelvic floor dysfunction.

2. Describe the prevalence of and risk factors for several common types of pelvic floor dysfunction, including urinary incontinence, fecal incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, and constipation.

3. Discuss a protocol and procedure for the physical therapy examination and evaluation of a patient with pelvic floor dysfunction.

4. Develop physical therapy interventions for pelvic floor dysfunction utilizing behavioral, educational, and exercise strategies.

5. Apply strategies to promote healthy bladder habits and to decrease symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction in the elderly population.

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Type:E-Learning Course
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Learning Time:2h  
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Available discounts:
  • Nonmember
  • APTA Member
  • Geriatrics
* Prices in US Dollars