Advanced Gynaecological Surgery Centre
 
My Symptoms

Urinary incontinence

There are three main types:

Stress incontinence

  • Urine is lost during activities that increase the pressure within your abdomen. Examples are coughing, sneezing, lifting or exercise.
  • Pelvic floor exercises under the supervision of a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist, weight loss and improved general fitness can significantly improve symptoms.
  • However, when these measures do not work surgery can be performed.

Urge incontinence

  • There is usually an uncontrollable urge to go to the toilet (urgency or detrusor instability) that is often followed by the leakage of urine before the toilet is reached.
  • Conservative measures such as a reduction in caffeine and soft drink intake, bladder “retraining” with a physiotherapist and medications are used to treat this type of incontinence.
  • Surgery is seldom indicated for this type of incontinence.

Mixed incontinence

  • A combination of urge and stress incontinence.

  • Urinary incontinence is more common in women who have had children.
  • It is thought that tissue damage due to childbirth, in combination with age leads to the gradual onset of incontinence symptoms.
  • Some women seem particularly prone to developing incontinence.
  • There are surgical procedures that can correct your problem.
  • Your doctor will discuss various options with you to help you decide what is likely to be the best solution.
  • Pelvic floor exercises, weight reduction and a decrease in caffeine, alcohol, and/or nicotine intake will all reduce the incidence of urinary incontinence.
  • These conservative measures alone may be enough to treat symptoms.
  • Pelvic floor exercises should be taught and supervised by a physiotherapist who specialises in pelvic floor defects.
  • Ideally these should be initiated prior to having surgery to maximise your pelvic floor function and reduce the potential for recurrent incontinence.
  • Please speak with the reception staff for contact details of a physio or a referral.

Investigations

Treatment options