Urinary Incontinence

What you should know about Urogynecology

What is Urinary Incontinence?  Commonly known as lack of bladder control, urinary incontinence is a common problem in women.  There are several types of urinary incontinence.  Sometimes women have trouble getting to the bathroom on time, find themselves urinating frequently or leaking with laughing or coughing.  If you find yourself limiting your activity to places where you know where the bathrooms are or avoiding exercise to avoid leaking, it’s time to call a urogynecologist.

Your urogynecologist will evaluate your bladder function in order to precisely determine what is causing your bladder problem.  This will allow him / her to recommend treatments specifically designed for your care.  In order to evaluate your bladder function, you may be asked to complete a bladder diary, undergo a full pelvic exam, undergo bladder function testing (urodynamics), or undergo cystoscopy to examine the inside of your bladder.

When is it time to seek treatment? If you find that you are making changes in your lifestyle because of your bladder, prolapse or bowel habits, it’s time to see what options are out there. None of these problems should control your life, money and time.

And you’re not alone — at least half of women over the age of 55 have one of these problems.

Based on your complete evaluation, your urogynecologist will recommend treatment specifically designed for your lifestyle. There will likely be a few options to choose from.  The options may include non-surgical treatment such as pelvic floor exercises; oral, patch or intra-vaginal medication; devises to help elevate vaginal prolapse; or surgical therapy to correct anatomic defects..

Does this sound familiar? Are you ready to do something about these problems?

This tip was Written by Megan Schimpf, MD