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  Urology Singapore - International Urology, Fertility & Gynaecology Centre  
 
   
 
Dr Michael Wong - Urologist Michael is an accomplished specialist in the field with great involvement and achievements in the international arena.
 
Associate Editor of the British Journal of Urology International
Gynaecologist and Obstetrician - Dr Julianah Abu Julianah is a prominent Malay Senior Consultant Gynaecologist and Fertility Specialist in Singapore.
(Sabbatical Leave 2018)
   
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Urinary Incontinence
 

At the International Urology, Fertility and Gynaecology Centre, we offer a wide range of services for the diagnosis and treatment of disorders and diseases concerning the urological system for both men and women.

Urinary Incontinence is the loss of control over one’s bladder. This means that the person has the tendency to urinate unintentionally. It is a common and often an uncomfortable problem. The severity varies from occasionally leaking urine when you cough or sneeze to persistent conditions that can still be treated.

Urinary Incontinence usually happens when the regular process of storing and transporting of urine outside the body is interrupted, but it can also occur due to other reasons and factors. It can either be temporary or persistent.

Temporary Urinary Incontinence

Urinary Incontinence may happen all of a sudden and then go away after a short period of time. Certain drinks and foods may increase the volume of urine and stimulate your bladder. These consist of:

  • Foods that are high in spice, sugar or acid (citrus fruits)
  • Large doses of vitamin C
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Chocolate
  • Chili peppers

Persistent Urinary Incontinence

Urinary Incontinence may continue on a long-term basis and become a persistent condition. This may be caused by physical problems like:

  • Childbirth

    Vaginal delivery can damage the bladder nerves and supportive tissue that controls the bladder. It can also weaken the pelvic floor muscles, resulting into an overactive bladder. Having an overactive bladder means the person urinates more than the usual as the bladder have uncontrollable spasms.

  • Aging

    The aging of the bladder muscle can reduce the bladder's capacity to store urine. This means that as you get older, involuntary bladder contractions become recurrent.

  • Menopause

    After menopause, women produce less oestrogen - a kind of hormone that retains the lining of the bladder and urethra in good physical shape. Lack of oestrogen causes the pelvic muscles to deteriorate and may not be able to control the bladder.

  • Hysterectomy

    Any surgery that involves a woman's reproductive system like the removal of the uterus, may hurt the supporting pelvic floor muscles and cause an incontinence.

One of the different types of urinary incontinence is caused by physical stress, also known as Stress Urinary Incontinence. When the bladder and muscles involved in urinary control are positioned under stress or pressure, the person may urinate unwillingly. Here are some actions that may trigger stress incontinence:

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Laughing
  • Heavy lifting
  • Exercise
  • A sudden change in position
  • The sound of running water (for some people)
  • Sex (especially during orgasm)

Every treatment depends on the type and severity of the symptoms. Some cases can be treated by a simple change in habits that may prevent the actions that trigger urinary incontinence. Aside from this, here are some of the other treatments for Stress Urinary Incontinence:

Exercises

Pelvic floor exercises can toughen the muscles that help control urination. You can try doing Kegel exercises by contracting your muscles, holding it for 5 seconds and releasing it after about 5 seconds as well. You can also try doing squats by standing in an upright position and dropping down until your thighs are parallel to the ground, maintaining the weight in your heels and bowing the knees a little outward.

Bladder training

Bladder training helps the patient slowly gain back control over their bladder. These are the following techniques for bladder training:

  • Postponing the event - The patient learns how to delay urination whenever there is an impulse to do so. The aim is to control the urge.
  • Scheduled Toilet Trips – The patient learns to set a toilet time during the day, e.g. going every 2 hours. This strengthens the bladder as it learns to control the urge to urinate.

Medications for urinary incontinence

If you choose to have medications, exercises and bladder training are still necessary. Here are some of the medications that are prescribed to treat urinary incontinence:

  • Anticholinergics and newer oral therapy are now available to calm overcharged bladder– it calms overcharged bladders.
  • Topical oestrogen - reinforces tissue in the urethra and vaginal areas, which maintains the muscular and connective tissues.
  • Imipramine – it reduces the number of times you leak urine.

Surgery

Surgery is suggested if the other treatments and rehabilitations have not been effective. Some of the surgical treatments include the following:

  • Sling procedures – This supports the urethra to stop urine from leaking out by inserting a mesh under the neck of the bladder.
  • Artificial sphincter - an artificial sphincter is inserted from the bladder into the urethra to control the flow of urine.

Urinary Incontinence happens more frequently as people get older. If urinary incontinence affects your day-to-day activities, don't hesitate to call us today at +65 6838 1212 or email me directly at email@drmichaelwong.com.

Our Senior Consultant Urologist, Dr Michael Wong, is well regarded by both his patients and colleagues. He will diagnose and treat each patient with utmost expertise and care. Know more about our services here.

 
 
 

Contact Information    
International Urology, Fertility & Gynaecology Centre
3 Mount Elizabeth Road, #10-09,
Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
,
Singapore 228510
Tel: (65) 6838 1212, (65) 6838 1218
Fax: (65) 6838 1216
24-hour answering service: (65) 6535 8833
International Assistance email: email@drmichaelwong.com
Urology Centre Singapore

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