Ulas Bozdogan, MD, FACOG
Endometriosis Specialist located in NJ and New York City, NY
Urinary incontinence is more common with age but it is not a “natural” part of aging, and it can be successfully treated. As a top-rated OB-GYN in NJ and New York City, NY, Dr. Ulas Bozdogan helps patients at Advanced Endometriosis Center overcome the symptoms of urinary incontinence so they can lead healthier, more confident lives.
Urinary Incontinence Q & A
What is urinary incontinence?
Urinary incontinence refers to the inability to control the bladder or to prevent unintentional urine flow or leakage. There are three primary types of urinary incontinence:
- urge incontinence (also called overactive bladder), which causes frequent uncontrollable urges to urinate, even at night during sleep, usually occurring when nerves that control the bladder are injured or damaged
- stress incontinence that causes bladder leakage when sneezing, laughing, coughing or performing strenuous activities including sex and exercises, occurring when the pelvic floor muscles become damaged or weak
- mixed incontinence, which includes both stress and urge incontinence
Incontinence can also occur in people with certain neuromuscular diseases and in people with impaired mobility who have difficulty making it to a bathroom in time to urinate. Sometimes, incontinence can be caused or exacerbated by medications or other underlying diseases. Stress incontinence is the most common type of incontinence, and it can be caused by many factors, including injury or muscle weakening from childbirth, obesity, traumatic injury and changes that occur during menopause.
How can I tell which type of incontinence I have?
Diagnosing the type and cause of incontinence begins with a physical exam and a medical history, often followed by a pelvic exam, lab tests, diagnostic imaging or other in-office evaluations used to measure the capacity and function of the bladder and the strength of the pelvic floor muscles, a network of supportive and connective tissues that “hold up” the bladder.
How is urinary incontinence treated?
Urinary incontinence is not a “natural” part of aging; there are plenty of treatment that can help control urinary incontinence symptoms to help patients lead more comfortable, more confident lives. Some types of urinary incontinence may be treated with medication, often in combination with exercises to restore tone and strength to the pelvic floor muscles. Other types of incontinence are best treated with surgery using minimally-invasive approaches or robot-assisted techniques using the da Vinci surgical robot. Surgery can be used to repair damaged pelvic floor muscles or to provide additional support, relieving symptoms and preventing embarrassing leakage.
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