Urinary incontinence is a very common condition. The risk of developing some form of urinary incontinence increases with age. Although this is a common condition, it is not always easy to discuss. The providers at Northside Northpoint OB/GYN can listen to your concerns and offer guidance for treatment options.
Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is the involuntary leakage of urine with coughing, sneezing, or other forms of exertion. Risk factors are advancing age and pelvic floor trauma, commonly due to pregnancy changes. Conservative therapies include physical therapy specifically aimed at the pelvic floor muscles or the use of pessaries. Surgical therapies include a variety of procedures, but the most common current procedure is the mid urethral sling. This is conducted with a small vaginal insertion made in the vaginal wall approximately halfway between the external opening and the entrance of the urethra into the bladder. The sling is made from a small piece of mesh that is tacked in place to prevent the urethra from dropping during straining.
Urgency incontinence is a condition where patients have a strong urge to void immediately preceding or at the time of involuntary leakage of urine. Another term commonly used to describe this condition is the “overactive bladder” which is associated with the need to empty the bladder frequently throughout the day and the night causing a disruption of sleep. This type of incontinence is associated with older age, neurologic disorders, bladder abnormalities, or without any obvious cause. This condition is treated by bladder training using timed voiding or medications.
Mixed urinary incontinence is the third category. In this type of incontinence, the symptoms can include a combination of the above symptoms as well as many others.
If you are experiencing urinary incontinence, please discuss your symptoms with your provider at Northside Northpoint OB/GYN. We can discuss possible lifestyle interventions and suggest a referral to a specialist (urologist or urogynecologist) if appropriate.