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What is the STRESS about Stress Urinary Incontinence?




Stress urinary incontinence is the leakage of urine in an unintentional way. It happens due to a physical movement or activity such as sneezing, coughing, exercising or lifting heavy weights during an exercise. It is in no way related to psychological stress of any kind.

Stress incontinence is due to the weakening of the muscles and other tissues supporting the bladder. Other relevant reasons responsible are physical changes such as age, obesity, hysterectomy and pelvic floor surgery.

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How can one manage stress incontinence?

The percentage of people suffering from stress incontinence is huge. Patients can benefit from many options as per their individual needs. The treatment should be discussed with many prior options. These can include behavior therapies, medication devices and surgery.

Behavioral modifications

Behavioral modifications are associated with the lifestyle changes of an individual. These include floor muscle exercises, biofeedback, and neuro stimulation on the medical terms. Other than these are the low intake of caffeinated beverages and alcohol, quitting of smoking, losing excess weight, schedule of regular toilet trips are very helpful measures for behavioral modifications.


The medicine used to treat depression is DULOXETINE. It can help with stress incontinence as well. The interfere with certain chemicals which are used to transmit nerve impulses to the muscles. This aids in the contraction of the muscles of the urethra more strongly. This in turn manages stress incontinence.

Non-surgical devices

Certain devices designed for women may help control stress incontinence, including vaginal peccary (shaped like a ring with two bumps that sit on each side of the urethra) and urethral inserts (small tampon-like disposable device inserted into the urethra that acts as a barrier to prevent leakage).

Surgical options

Surgical procedures are developed to improve the effective closure of the sphincter or support the bladder neck.  Surgical options include inject able bulking agents, retro pubic colposuspension, inflatable artificial sphincter and sling procedures (surgical mesh).

Transvaginal sling with mesh is the most common procedure performed in women with stress incontinence.

Transvaginal sling is the procedure in which the surgeon uses the patient’s own tissue or a synthetic mesh to create a sling or loop to support the urethra. The complications are infrequent and rarely require any follow-up surgery.

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