Our expert says:
Dear Shelley. You need a diagnosis. Your problem may be an abdominal muscle injury but it may also be a host of other causes that could be responsible. Pilates instructors teach and correct movement, they don't diagnose. It sounds like you must be fed up with the medical model (join the club) - but try to find a good diagnostician, maybe a physician on referral from a friend or family member. Be prepared to do some searching and perhaps get several diagnoses before YOU decide which course of action take.
This should not be too difficult and it is your responsibility, not the doctors'. You might begin with medpages.co.za which is public directory for finding practitioners - search for physicians in your area.
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