Urinary incontinence, also known as loss of bladder control, can be an embarrassing problem for some, but it is also considered common. The severity of incontinence symptoms can range from occasional urine leakage as the result of a cough or sneeze to getting the urge to urinate that's very sudden and strong, causing the patient to not be able to reach the toilet in time.
Urinary incontinence is a symptom that can be caused by everyday habits, an underlying medical condition, or other physical problems. The good news is incontinence can be treated no matter which type a patient may have. Urinary incontinence can have many different levels. The specific types include:
There is also fecal incontinence, also called bowel or anal incontinence, which is the inability to control bowel movements, causing fecal matter to leak unexpectedly from the rectum.
Treatment for incontinence begins with a thorough and professional examination from a qualified healthcare professional. Depending on the type of incontinence, a combination of treatments might be needed. Treatments can include noninvasive techniques such as behavioral techniques, as in bladder training, pelvic floor muscle exercises, or electrical stimulation. These techniques might be combined together or with medications to calm an overactive bladder. Interventional therapies can be used, or as a last resort surgery might be recommended. Surgery can involve the use of sling procedures, bladder neck suspension, or prolapse surgery. The patient should consult with their doctor to find out the best treatment options for their specific needs.