incontinence

loss of bladder control

Millions of adults have loss of bladder control which causes them to avoid participating in activities for fear of an accident. Even though they may feel too embarrassed to discuss the issue of bladder control loss, the problem may rule their lives. Whether people have urge incontinence from an overactive bladder or stress incontinence causing leakage, here are some effective management strategies which can help individuals take back control.

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continence care planning with physician

When an individual is not able to care for their urinary and bowel needs independently, creating a continence care plan can help ensure that not only are the person's needs attended to carefully and completely, but also that all caregivers can better coordinate care. Here are the five steps in creating a continence care plan.

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incontinence after surgery

Complete removal of the prostate offers men the strongest cure from prostate cancer. However, over half of men having prostate surgery experience incontinence after surgery as a side effect of having their prostate removed. The good news is that there are new techniques and surgical procedures which can minimize the problem. Furthermore, for most men, urinary incontinence after surgery lessens or completely stops in 6 to 18 months.

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bowel incontinence

A common problem, especially in older people, is bowel incontinence or leaking of fecal matter. Individuals suffering from this condition may fear embarrassment and even avoid activities. Unless specifically asked about it, many people are reluctant to talk about this issue, even with their doctor.

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urinary incontinence in women

Accidental release of urine is a very common and embarrassing problem, especially among older women. Most health care providers will encounter female patients with incontinence. Primarily because of the physical stress of pregnancy on the bladder, incontinence in women occurs 2-3 times more often than incontinence in men. In women over 40, one study suggested that over 60% experienced incontinence at least once a month. Consequently, it is important for health care providers to be aware of the risk factors to help women with incontinence find effective management strategies.

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urinary incontinence in men

The embarrassing and inconvenient problem of urinary incontinence in men, which affects 3.4 million Americans, is not a normal part of aging. Health care practitioners need to be prepared to talk with male patients about this treatable condition.

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Stress Incontinence

Stress incontinence is the most common form of urinary incontinence and occurs when an individual has unintentional leakage of urine, usually after an activity that presses on the bladder. Because stress incontinence can occur after simply lifting something heavy, coughing, sneezing, exercising or even having sexual activity, this common medical condition can severely impact a patient's life and mental health.

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incontinence

Incontinence can be divided into two main types - urinary and fecal incontinence. The first one refers to inability to control urine flow, while the second type is marked by inability to control bowel movements. Urinary incontinence is more common than inability to control bowel movements and is further subdivided into the following types:

urinary incontinence

Leaking urine involuntarily can be embarrassing for patients to talk about with health providers. Urinary incontinence is not a disease, it is a symptom with many causes. Fortunately, many treatments exist to help improve or even eliminate symptoms of this common medical condition which affects as many as 1 in 5 women and 1 in 10 men during their lifetime.

Glenda Motta's picture

by Glenda Motta RN, MPH

The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that nearly one in five Medicare patients discharged from a hospital—approximately 2.6 million seniors—is readmitted within 30 days, at a cost of over $26 billion every year.

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