Millions of women suffer from involuntary loss of urine control called urinary incontinence. This can range from slightly bothersome to very debilitating to the point of going through multiple pads or diapers daily. Pregnancy, child birth, and menopause contribute to the fact that women suffer from incontinence far more than men. Incontinence can lead to public embarrassment if it occurs outside of your home, or much emotional distress if it occurs during sex.
There are mainly two types of urinary incontinence in women. If you have leakage when you cough, sneeze, jumping, or running, you have stress urinary incontinence (SUI). SUI is caused by the weakening of your pelvic floor muscles, which then is unable to squeeze close as tightly as it could the opening of the bladder also known as the urethra. Urge urinary incontinence (UUI) is the leakage that occurs when you cannot hold a sudden urge to urinate. Many women have both types of incontinence.
Incontinence is evaluated frequently with these tests
Treatment is needed when conservative options such as Kegel exercises are not working. Treatment is individually geared toward your symptom. Patients with mainly SUI symptoms may benefit from a mid urethral sling procedure where synthetic mesh material is placed with surgery done through a small incision in the vagina. Patients with UUI symptoms are best treated with anti-cholinergic medications such as oxybutynin, vesicare, and more recently a beta adrenegic agonist called Myrbetriq. When the medications fail, three other options can be considered. These three options are botox injection into the bladder, posterior nerve stimulation, or neuromodulation, where stimulating the nerve leaving the bladder can be effective in treating the urge symptoms.
Please schedule an appointment with one of our doctors to discuss which options are most appropriate for you.