Ultimate Bowel Course: GI and Pelvic Floor in Fair Lawn, NJ

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Ultimate Bowel Course: GI and Pelvic Floor

Pelvic Guru Faculty: Susan C. Clinton PT DScPT OCS WCS FAAOMPT

Course Description

A comprehensive approach to gastrointestinal disorders including bowel and digestion dysfunction. This approach allows for the consideration of management of multiple factors s including nutritional, psychosocial, medical-surgical decisions, and physical therapy examination/intervention advanced intervention. A multifactorial approach can often lead to improved management of this complex patient as a varied intervention approach may be required to be successful. A comprehensive understanding of the physiology and symptom manifestation can improve the ability to develop a comprehensive intervention strategy tailored to each patient’s needs throughout the episode of care.

Course Hours

Registration: 7:30 am – 8 am

Day 1: 8 am – 5 pm

Day 2: 8 am – 5 pm


This course is both lecture format and includes practical labs with anorectal palpation.


An application for PT CEUs is being filed in New Jersey and New York. If you are coming from another state, please check with your state on reciprocity for CEUs.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this seminar, participants will be able to:

  • Understand and define functional bowel disorders and bowel disease
  • Recognize the latest evidence on the HPA axis and the relationship of the GI system to multisystem physiology in the human
  • Define the multidisciplinary role in assessment of the patient with gastrointestinal disorders including the latest evidence on specialized testing.
  • Understand and implement a physical therapy examination algorithm for differential diagnosis of musculoskeletal impairments and functional movement dysfunctions of individual with gastrointestinal disorders including the lower GI tract.
  • Identify potential medical “red flags” that warrant referral to the appropriate physician.
  • Recognize the psychosocial and behavioral component as well as the expanded role of physical therapy intervention.
  • Demonstrate appropriate physical therapy examination and intervention techniques for patients with gastrointestinal disorders.
  • Develop and discuss examination and intervention of clients with complex gastrointestinal disorders in a case study format.

Susan C. Clinton PT, DScPT, OCS, WCS, COMT, FAAOMPT received her Physical Therapy degree from Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas and a Masters of Health Sciences at LSU Health Science Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. She completed her Doctor of Science degree at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan and graduated with her NAIOMT fellowship in orthopedic manual therapy in 2013. She was accepted as a Fellow by the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Therapists in 2014 and serves as a clinical faculty and specialty course faculty for NAIOMT. As a Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Manual Therapy, Orthopedics and Women’s Health, she has been actively treating patients with pelvic floor, urinary, bowel, reproductive, oncology, persistent pain, sports injuries and post-surgical diagnoses. She currently practices in Sewickley, Pennsylvania and is the co-owner and founder of Embody Physiotherapy and Wellness, LLC. Susan is active in teaching and research as an adjunct instructor for the University of Pittsburgh and Chatham University. Additionally, she is an international instructor and presenter of post-professional education in women’s health and orthopedic manual therapy and a certified Total Control® Instructor. Her research activities include publications on chronic pelvic pain and clinical practice guidelines for the APTA Section on Women’s Health and Orthopedic Section. Susan is active with the American Physical Therapy Association, serving in governance as a local delegate and alternate delegate, and as the Chair of the Clinical Practice Guidelines steering committee for the Section on Women’s Health. She is the past secretary on the Section on Women’s Health Board of Directors and the former President of the Performing Arts Special Interest Group of the Orthopedic Section of the APTA. She has served as an item writer and case reviewer for the WCS board certification examination and is a member of the credentialing committee with ABPTRFE. Susan is proud to serve as an inaugural board member of the Women’s Global Health Imitative (GWHI) and she concurrently serves on the board for the Association of Pelvic Organ Prolapse Support (APOPS). Susan has received awards for outstanding research in pelvic girdle by AAOMPT and Outstanding Clinical Educator by Chatham University. She is the 2016 winner of the Elizabeth Noble Award from the Section on Women’s Health.


This course is open to physiotherapists, naturopathic doctors, nurses, midwives and medical doctors. Internal palpation is required. Experience and training in hands-on pelvic floor treatment – vaginal or rectal are required.

Physiotherapists other healthcare providers that have completed this course are able to perform an evaluation of the musculoskeletal aspect of the GI system (including a focus on the lower GI region), establish and create a treatment plan and it’s progression for GI dysfunction and movement impairments of the abdomen and pelvic region. The interventions will include manual therapy, movement/exercise, respiration and balloon catheter techniques to reduce dysfunction. They also have a foundational knowledge of the GI system including digestive disorders, basic nutritional contributions, abdominal and pelvic floor dysfunction, and psychosocial/behavioral contributions.

7:30-8:00 am: Registration

8:00-8:30 am: Introduction

8:30-10:30 am: Functional Lower Gastrointestinal Disorders Abdominal, GI Anatomy and Physiology, Pelvic GI Anatomy and Physiology, Functional Constipation: Symptoms, Types, Differential Diagnosis and Rome III Criterion, IBS: Symptoms, Types, Differential Diagnosis and Rome Criterion, Fecal incontinence: Symptoms, Types, Differential Diagnosis and Rome Criterion

10:30-10:45 am: Break

10:45-11:30 am: Anatomy of the GI System continued

11:30 am -12:45 pm: PT Examination and Treatment Pelvic Lecture, Differential Diagnosis of Muscle, Fascia, BFT, and Posture of Defecation – Introduction of Hypo and Hypersensitive patient

12:45-1:45 pm: Lunch – Bowel Radiology – Manometry and Functional MRI with Dr. Vikhas Shah

1:45-2:30 pm: Lab #1 Pelvic (internal/external) exam and Interventions for dyssenergia, rectal pain and coccydynia – soft tissue techniques, neural mobilization and motor control

2:30 – 2:45 pm: Break

2:45-4:30 pm: Lab #2 Lab #1 continued and Advanced Biofeedback and functional position lab (Assessment of Defecation)

4:30-5:00 pm: Balloon Catheter Demonstration, Instruction in Catheter Manipulation

8:00-9:30 am: Lab #3 – Balloon Catheter – application and intervention for the hyper and hyposensitive patient

9:30-9:45 am: Break

9:45-11:30 am: PT Thoracoabdominal Region Treatment: Red Flags, Intraabdominal Pressure Changes, Abdominal Massage, Integration of Anatomical Relationships with Treatment
Adjunct Considerations of Physical Therapy Examination and Treatment: Activity, Nutrition, Pharmacy, Sleep, Stress, Gut microbiome and the HPA axis – includes differential diagnosis for referral

11:30-12:00 pm: Lunch break

12:00 -2:00 pm: Lab #4 Abdominal Anatomy and Intervention Lab: Anatomy and Palpation skills, Abdominal Examination, Differential Diagnosis and Intervention: Abdominal Region, Respiration, Fascial Mobilization

2:00-2:15 pm: Break

2:15-3:15 pm: Medical Testing for GI Dysfunction

3:15-4:30 pm: Questions/Discussions: Abdominal and Pelvic Assessment and Treatment Case Studies and Case Study Presentations (comprehensive case studies – includes differential diagnosis, multifaceted treatment strategies and referral), Review and Discussion of the hyper vs. hypo sensitive patient

4:30-5:00 pm: Final Questions and Summary, Review of Available Self Study Tools


What will the labs be like for this course?

The labs for this course are both internal and external. The focus of the labs will be anal/rectal, but there will be some internal vaginal lab time due to rectocele topics. We encourage students to participate but we also want you to do what is most comfortable for you. If you choose to not participate in a lab, you are not required to bring a model, however, it can affect other participants’ learning experiences.

What is the balloon catheter training like for The Ultimate Bowel Course?

This is a full lab with full practice for use and intervention with your lab partner.

What is the Pelvic Guru refund policy?

Refunds are honored up to 30 days prior to the course and may be subject to a $75 administrative fee. Refund requests within 30 days of the course will not be provided. If the course does not reach the minimum number of registered students up to 30 days before the course, the course may be canceled and a full refund will be provided.

Will I receive CEUs for this course?

We have registered for PT CEUs in the state of the course. If you are coming from another state, please check with your state on reciprocity for CEUs. (This is standard practice for all live CEU courses).

Airport Information

The nearest airport is Newark Liberty International Airport | Airport Code: EWR

You can also fly into LaGuardia or JFK are about a one hour drive to the course location.

Lodging Nearby

Hyatt Place Fair Lawn

41-01 Broadway
Fair Lawn, NJ 07410

(201) 475-3888

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