What is Urinary Incontinence (UI)?

What is Urinary Incontinence (UI)?

UI or Urinary incontinence is known as uncontrolled leakage of urine. It is a condition that leads to loss of bladder control. There are five types of UI:

1. Urge continence

2. Stress continence

3. Overflow incontinence

4. Functional incontinence

5. Mixed incontinence

Urinary incontinence is considered to be a common problem found in the elderly as the bladder capacity to hold the urine decreases with age. But in reality, one can be affected by this condition at any point in life. Urinary incontinence is common in women than in men. Approximately 30 percent of women aged between 30 to 60 years are affected by this condition. Let's discuss below the symptoms, causes, and treatment for urinary continence below.

Symptoms of Urinary Incontinence:

Below listed are the symptoms of the condition

  • Urine leakage during everyday activities
  • Feeling strong urge to urinate even after emptying the bladder
  • Urine leakage without any warning
  • Wetting in sleep

Causes of Urinary Incontinence:

There are a lot of reasons behind urinary incontinence. There is also a strong link between the type of urinary incontinence and its cause. Below given are a few of them:

  • Pregnancy and vaginal delivery
  • Obesity
  • Age
  • Surgery or trauma
  • Prostate enlargement
  • Cystitis
  • Urinary stones
  • Fistula
  • Congenital bladder problems
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Side-effects of certain medications

Treatment for UI:

The treatments for the condition include:

Exercises and Behavioral Techniques

Kegel exercises can help in strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. Also, by certain behavioral techniques such as learning bladder control by delaying the urination, double voiding, and scheduling the bathroom timings can help in making your life easy and less embarrassing.

Medications

Doctors may provide anticholinergics, mirabegron, alpha blockers and topical estrogens based on your type of urinary incontinence. These medicines help in regaining bladder control.

Medical Devices

Men and women with urinary incontinence may use catheters to empty their bladder. For women, a device called pressary and urinary inserts can be used to prevent urine leakage.

Interventional Therapies

Interventional therapies such as a bulking agent or paste may be injected near the urinary sphincter to treat stress incontinence or an electric nerve stimulation may be given to empty the bladder or in some cases, even Botox injection may be given to the bladder to calm an overactive bladder.

Surgery

There are several surgical procedures available for treating this condition. Some of them are Sling procedure, Bladder neck suspension, Prolapse surgery, and artificial urinary sphincter.

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