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Urinary incontinence

Information for the patientUrinary incontinence

What is urinary incontinence?

Urinary incontinence is defined as a problem of uncontrolled urination. Urine is excreted from the bladder unconsciously, which may cause problems for the patient in their social life.

Due to its causes, we differentiate the following types of incontinence:

  • Urge incontinence is urine leakage which follows the feeling of urinary urgency (a sudden and unstoppable need to urinate).
  • Mixed incontinence is urine leakage related to urinary urgency as well as effort, sneezing and coughing.
  • Overactive bladder is defined as urinary urgency, day and/or night polyuria with or without urinary incontinence.
  • Effort incontinence, when an uncontrolled urine leakage is caused by pressure rise inside the abdomen, e.g. while sneezing or making effort. Urethra sphincter inefficiency and weak pelvic floor muscles are directly responsible for this dysfunction.

Am I exposed to the risk of urinary incontinence connected with overactive bladder?

The disease affects both women and men. The frequency of overactive bladder cases ranges from 10% to 26 % in adult men and from 8% to 42% in adult women.The older the age the more frequent the disease and it usually occurs together with other symptoms in the lower urinary tracts area.
Many common chronic diseases, such as depression, obstructions, neurological disorders and erection dysfunctions are closely related to overactive bladder, even if such factors as sex, age and country of residence are considered.

How to recognize urinary incontinence?

Urinary incontinence is recognized above all based on the interview with the patient. The basic question should relate to urinary incontinence and/or urinary urgency. A confirmative answer to this question extends the interview with questions about the circumstances of urgencies and/or urinary incontinence:

  • incontinence while coughing, sneezing, physical effort,
  • incontinence following urinary urgency,
  • presence of night and/or day polyuria.