At the Institute for Incontinence and Vaginal Reconstruction, we know that urinary incontinence can be embarrassing even though it usually isn’t symptomatic of a serious health condition. It can happen to both males and females regardless of age or health, but it affects women more often than it does men. While pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause are commonly responsible for the condition, a hysterectomy is one of the most common causes of incontinence in women in Los Angeles
As you grow older, the chances of incontinence rise due to weakened or stretched pelvic muscles, often resulting from medications, urological infections, or even surgery. Depending on the type and cause of urinary incontinence, a skilled urologist can determine the best incontinence treatments for each patient’s unique needs and goals.
Types of Bladder Control Issues
Stress incontinence (SI)
Stress incontinence refers to the condition where pressure from physical actions (sneezing, coughing, exercising, etc.) squeezes the bladder, causing urine leakage. This often occurs because the pelvic muscles are so stretched that they cannot tighten enough to support your bladder.
Urge incontinence means you have a strong urge to pee – even if there’s only a little bit of urine in the bladder – but can’t get to the bathroom on time. The bladder muscle is so overactive that it pushes urine out of the bladder unexpectedly.
A combination of the two, mixed incontinence, is common, as well as overflow incontinence, which causes an overflow of urine due to a blocked urethra.
Hysterectomy-Related Urinary Issues
According to research, women who undergo a hysterectomy appear to have an increased risk of SI, usually within the first five years after the surgery. Yet, it is believed that there are many women with bladder control issues following a hysterectomy who never seek help, mostly because they’re unaware that effective incontinence treatments are available.
If you suspect that you’re suffering from some type of female bladder issue in the Los Angeles area, be sure to see an experienced, board-certified urologist for a proper diagnosis.
Receive an Expert Diagnostic Evaluation
At the Institute for Incontinence and Vaginal Reconstruction, we perform our diagnoses at our Beverly Hills practice by carefully combing through your history to determine the cause and type of female urinary issues.
Often, we’ll evaluate the urine capacity of your bladder to determine if the bladder muscles are functioning properly. In addition to that, we might use various techniques to measure bladder pressure and urine flow.
We could also run the following tests to identify the exact cause(s):
Urinalysis – This tests for infections, stones, and other potential causes of bladder leakage.
Stress test – You simply cough and the doctor observes how much urine leaks.
Blood test – A sample of your blood is taken and rushed to a lab to be examined for potential health issues behind the loss of bladder control.
Ultrasound – This innovative method produces an image of your kidneys, bladder, and urethra using sound waves.
Cystoscopy – Your doctor will examine your urethra and bladder using a tiny camera inserted via a thin tube.
State-of-the-Art Female Incontinence Treatments
At the Institute for Incontinence and Vaginal Reconstruction, your health is our concern. Treatments for a weak or overactive bladder can involve a single approach or a combination of therapies, but many of our patients aren’t seeking complicated intervention as much as they’re seeking a way to at least be in control.
Even if you suffer from incontinence as a result of a hysterectomy, we encourage you to be proactive. As each case is different, your doctor will recommend the best incontinence treatments for your unique needs, which may include the following:
In many cases, this is among the most consistent and effective incontinence treatment. By scheduling trips to the bathroom and proactively managing your bladder, you can help keep leakage under control and to a minimum.
Physical therapy, where you can learn specific exercises that target and strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, can help give you control over your bladder, which is really all most patients are asking for.
The following recommendations can actually help you manage your urinary condition:
- Meditation helps reduce stress and calm the mind and body, which can help you remain in control of your bladder.
- Acupuncture can restore balance to your body by stimulating the nerves, blood flow, and oxygen within your body, which can help reduce the symptoms of urine leakage or loss of bladder control.
- A massage relaxes your body and muscles, which can help alleviate the stress on your urological system.
Each of these incontinence treatments can be supplemented and made more effective by eating a proper diet, exercising regularly, and making other simple lifestyle adjustments, as well.
In addition to behavioral changes, medication as part of incontinence treatments can be effective. Common incontinence medications include anticholinergic medications, which help calm the muscles of an overactive bladder, and topical estrogen, which rejuvenates vaginal tissue and can reduce urine leakage symptoms.
If medications, habit changes, or other incontinence treatments don’t work, several non-surgical treatments – including pessaries and urethral inserts – can assist with female incontinence.
For many women, this is the last resort. Various surgical options are available for urinary incontinence, including pelvic support procedures or endoscopic injections to limit leakage.
Contact a Female Urology Specialist in LA
Hysterectomy incontinence is common though irritating and embarrassing. However, effective types of incontinence treatments are available to offer relief and control. For more information, contact the Los Angeles incontinence experts at the Institute for Incontinence and Vaginal Reconstruction today for a consultation. Contact us online or call 310.307.3552 to schedule an appointment.
Next, read our blog, ThermiVa: The Answer to Your Problems “Down There.”