Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI)
Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) is when urine begins to leak out with immense pressure placed on the bladder and urethra. This causes the sphincter muscles to open for a short period of time. Mild SUI often occurs if the individual is involved in a more forceful activity or even from coughing, laughing and sneezing. With more severe cases of SUI, the urine can leak with even completely normal movements such as standing up or walking. SUI more commonly affects women than men. SUI can develop from a variety of factors, including:
- Childbirth: The pelvic floor muscles can be less strong after giving birth because of nerve damage. SUI can develop soon after you deliver a child or years later.
- Prostate Surgery: The leading cause of SUI in men is from having the prostate gland removed during surgery to treat prostate cancer. The sphincter is located right below the prostate gland and becomes weak after surgery, resulting in SUI.
- Body Weight: Individuals that are overweight or obese at a higher risk of developing SUI. The excess weight puts pressure on the pelvic organs.
Treatments for SUI include lifestyle/dietary changes, medical devices to manage the condition and surgery. OAB medication may be prescribed to reduce the frequency of leaks and control and overactive bladder but do not specifically treat SUI. You may also be asked to have your bladder tested for how it’s functioning. This may include measuring the bladder pressure, having cystoscopy and measurement of the post-void residual urine.