Province: Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia Health Authority Pain Management Service
It is an honor to have Jesse Robson as the Pelvic Health Solutions Spotlight. In reviewing her CV it is clear to see why she has been chosen. She has taken numerous post-graduate courses not only in pelvic health but also in breast cancer rehabilitation, within the orthopedic division, vestibular rehabilitation, concussion management and acupuncture. Jesse is also a certified fitness, Pilates and tai chi instructor.
Jesse currently works at the Halifax clinic of the Nova Scotia Health Authority Chronic Pain Service, treating physiotherapy outpatients and teaching group fitness and education programs. She loves helping people with chronic pain connect with their bodies, their hopes and their values, and helping them find stability and control within oppressive situations.
Jesse is the chair of the Women’s Health Division.
Congratulations Jesse, keep up the amazing work!!!
How long have you been practicing pelvic health physiotherapy?
I finished physiotherapy school in 2014, and took two pelvic health courses before graduating – so I am now in my third year of practice. I started out seeing primarily prenatal/postnatal clients, and now work primarily with clients who have pelvic pain.
What lead you into the specialty of pelvic health?
I took my first course in pelvic floor physiotherapy because I felt that this was an area of physiotherapy practice we hadn’t touched on at all in school, and I wanted to have a more comprehensive understanding of physiotherapy practice areas. Pelvic floor physiotherapy was rapidly becoming a service that more and more patients were requesting in Nova Scotia, which made it easy to find work in this area when I graduated – so I largely landed in this practice area by chance. Fortunately, this practice area is a great fit for my interests. I am very interested in helping people navigate complex biopsychosocial challenges, and enjoy being a resource for concerns that people are often too embarrassed or too distressed about to discuss with others in their lives.
I think that part of what attracts me to pelvic health is also the world of sex and gender issues. I find it very interesting learning about the barriers that culture can create when it comes to matters of self-care and caregiving, self-compassion, life roles, power and control, etc.
What do you love most about your profession?
I am really passionate about trauma-informed care, and really enjoy working with people who are struggling with the aftermath of adverse events. I also love having opportunities to offer people hope when they have little expectation that their situation can improve – particularly when they have been experiencing severe pain or incontinence for a long period of time.
I also love working in the public sector. I am really happy to have the opportunity to offer pelvic floor physiotherapy and physiotherapy treatment of persistent pain to people who have very few resources, and I really value the opportunity to help men and women who have experienced significant life adversity connect with help and healing.
Favourite course/what course has changed your clinical practice the most?
Tie between Pelvic Health Solutions’ Level 3 Course (Clinical Skills for Treating Pain) and Holly Herman’s Sexual Medicine course. These courses’ strong emphases on holistic healing and trauma-informed care continue to impact my day-to-day practice.
What has been your most rewarding experience?
I’ve had the opportunity to work with a few of the Syrian refugees who have recently arrived in Canada, and it has been a joy and a privilege to welcome them to Canada and help them gain a sense of safety within our country and our medical system.
What advice would you provide to new physiotherapists getting started in pelvic health?
Pelvic floor physiotherapy offers great opportunities to learn more about the interconnected nature of the body’s systems, and about biopsychosocial approaches to care. To a greater extent than other areas I have practiced in, I think this field is evolving quickly along with our collective understandings of pain, health, and healing. There is a lot to learn en route to becoming a pelvic floor physiotherapist, but I think the journey has significantly improved my abilities in other areas of physiotherapy practice, such as musculoskeletal and neurotherapetic practice. I would highly recommend at least an introductory course in pelvic floor physiotherapy to new grads and clinicians looking to advance their physiotherapy practice.