Male and Female Incontinence

What is urinary incontinence?

Urinary incontinence occurs when there is an involuntary loss of urine.

Urinary incontinence can be debilitating no matter what your age and or whether you are male or female. This can have an impact on your quality of life including your mental health.

Urinary incontinence can be managed and/or resolved. Our practice offers specialised services in all types of incontinence thus allowing you a better quality of life.

Types of incontinence

Types of incontinence include:

  • Stress
  • Urge
  • Mixed
  • Retention/overflow
  • Functional

Assessment of urinary incontinence

Before diagnosis and initiation of treatment, the patient will require a full assessment, which includes both a full history and a physical examination. This will provide valuable information on the problem. Other tests that may be requested include a bladder diary for 3 full days, urine tests, urinary tract imaging, flow test, post void residual measurement and video urodynamics. Following review of the problem and tests, the specialist will discuss the most appropriate treatment for you.

Stress Incontinence

Stress incontinence is urinary leakage that occurs during an increase in abdominal pressure i.e. coughing, laughing, sneezing and/or during physical activity. Stress incontinence can occur in both male and females. Although stress incontinence occurs mainly in women particularly after pregnancy and childbirth, men may also develop stress incontinence after prostate surgery or treatment. The amount of leakage varies between people.

Causes of stress incontinence include:

  • Childbirth
  • Hormone related – menopause
  • Weight gain
  • Conditions associated with excessive coughing
  • Constipation
  • In males- the development of stress incontinence following a prostate cancer treatment or prostate surgery

Management of Stress Incontinence

  • Monitoring fluid intake – this ensures you are drinking adequate fluids and therefore does not create other problems such as recurrent urinary tract infections if not drinking adequate fluids.
  • Ensuring a regular bowel routine – a full bowel can put pressure on the bladder causing leakage.
  • Pelvic floor muscles – this is ideal for both male and female and allows strengthening of the pelvic floor to reduce the amount of leakage
  • Weight reduction (if this is the cause) – excess weight can put a strain on your pelvic floor muscles
  • Vaginal oestrogens – allows bulking of the vagina and urethra thereby reducing leakage
  • Surgery – including:
  • The use of appropriate containments aids – pads for male and female and condom drainage for males.