Urinary incontinence (UI) is the involuntary leakage of urine and can be divided into urgency incontinence, stress incontinence, or combination of both called mixed incontinence.
Urgency urinary incontinence (UUI) is an involuntary leakage of urine that is associated with the symptom of urgency (sudden compelling desire to void which is difficult to defer). UUI may also be associated with overactive bladder (OAB). Many patients (both men and women) can be successfully treated with behavioral modification, pelvic floor exercises and/or medications. More severe cases can be effectively treated with minimally invasive procedures such as Interstim or Botox injections.
Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is the involuntary leakage of urine associated with an increase in abdominal pressure, such as during cough, sneeze, laugh, or exercise. It is a common medical condition affecting up to 35% of women. Treatment is tailored to the individual patient based on severity and bother. Options range from behavioral modification, pelvic floor exercises, urethral injections, or surgical intervention including procedures such as a urethral sling. In patients considering surgical intervention it is important for your physician to define your incontinence as urgency urinary incontinence or stress urinary incontinence as these conditions are treated differently. Should surgical treatment for SUI be indicated your physician will discuss treatment options and help choose the procedure that is right for you.
Mixed urinary incontinence (MUI) is defined as incontinence that occurs with both urgency and stress. Often, patients will have a combination of both types of leakage. It is important to distinguish between the two types of incontinence as they are treated differently. Additional studies may be required to establish your diagnosis and assist your physician with the treatment decision-making process.
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