Diego Illanes, MD, FACOG, FACS, Improves Quality of Life for Local Patients with Pelvic Floor Disorders


According to the American Urogynecologic Society, one in five people will suffer from a pelvic floor disorder during their lifetime. In fact, one-third of all women and 50 percent of women over the age of 55 are currently affected by a pelvic floor disorder. These conditions are not life threatening; however, if left untreated, they can negatively impact one’s lifestyle and potentially lead to additional pelvic floor disorders, and may even cause severe depression.

Unfortunately, Mansfield resident Sue Martins knows about this condition all too well.  The 47-year-old single mother of two spent the last five years suffering in silence with urinary incontinence. Incontinence occurs when the urethra, the tube that carries urine out of the body, has dropped out of place or when the sphincter muscle that controls the opening and closing of the urethra is weak, allowing leakage.

“I was always worried about coughing, sneezing, and laughing because those actions would cause me to leak. I had to plan my day accordingly to make sure I would be near a bathroom. I always had to have an extra set of clothing with me in case. My relationships suffered, I felt ashamed…my quality of life was deteriorating and I knew I had to find help for this problem,” said Martins.

After seeing a doctor who “didn’t explain things in a way she could understand,” she finally found Dr. Diego Illanes, MD, FACOG, FACS, of Milford Regional Urogynecology. “Dr. Illanes put me at ease from the moment I met him,” said Martins. “He was so patient, kind, and compassionate and I felt like he understood what I was going through.”

Dr. Illanes offers a variety of non-surgical and surgical options to treat the individual needs of each patient. His special interest includes conservative management/pelvic floor physical therapy, vaginal, robotic, laparoscopic, and minimally invasive surgery, and several office procedures for the treatment of incontinence, prolapse, and pelvic floor disorders to improve quality of life for our patients. 

As a specialist in pelvic floor disorders (PFD), Dr. Illanes diagnoses and treats patients with a variety of conditions, including: urinary incontinence, overactive bladder, and pelvic organ prolapse, among others. “These are fairly common conditions that affect both men and women of all ages.

Unfortunately, it is vastly undertreated, leaving millions to struggle with life altering symptoms that can be addressed with appropriate medical treatment,” said Dr. Illanes.

Last October, after trying non-surgical approaches to relieve her symptoms, including pelvic floor therapy, Martins finally opted for the mid-urethral sling procedure. Through this outpatient surgery, a sling is placed under the urethra, like a hammock, to support the urethra and provide pressure to keep the urethra opening closed. 

“The procedure was life changing for me. I no longer felt embarrassment or worry about doing the things I love to do,” said Martins, an avid gardener and amateur photographer.

Since the surgery last Fall, Martins has returned to doing many of her favorite activities she had missed out on due to her condition. “Now I can take long walks in the woods, attend concerts and sporting events, and I even went back to yoga, which had become impossible for me to enjoy before surgery.”

Dr. Illanes see patients at Milford Regional Urogynecology, located at 115 Water Street, Suite 105, Milford. As an added convenience, he also has offices in Hopkinton and Franklin. Fluent in English, Spanish and Portuguese, he is currently accepting new patients and can be reached at 774-462-3380.

Milford Regional Physician Group (MRPG) was established in 1992 and is one of the largest physician practice groups in the MetroWest and Blackstone Valley Region. MRPG, along with Milford Regional Medical Center, forms the Milford Regional Healthcare System, and consists of 43 primary care and specialty practices, including over 130 physicians, 82 advanced practitioners and 630 total staff.

To learn more about female urinary incontinence and listen to Dr. Illanes discuss the symptoms and treatment, click here.

For more information about MRPG’s services, practices and physicians, visit www.milfordregionalphysicians.org, follow us on Facebook @MilfordRegionalPhysicianGroup, or contact our New Patient Liaison at 1-833-GET-MRPG.

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