Male Urinary Incontinence
UW Health's urology program offers treatment for men who experience urinary incontinence.
Causes of Urinary Incontinence
Urinary incontinence affects men of all ages and there can be many different causes.
For some men, the removal of the prostate gland for prostate cancer can lead to stress incontinence. Stress incontinence refers to the loss of urine when you exert pressure on your bladder by lifting an object, exercising, sneezing, or even coughing.
Urge Incontinence or Overactive Bladder
Urge incontinence, also referred to as an overactive bladder, occurs when the bladder contracts even when it is not full. Individuals with urge incontinence typically experience a sudden urge to urinate followed by an involuntary loss of urine. Causes of urge incontinence include:
- Urinary tract infection
- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
- Bowel problems
- Damage to the nervous system from multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's, stroke or injury
Men with prostate problems may experience overflow incontinence. Overflow incontinence occurs when an individual is unable to empty his bladder, which can lead to constant dribble of urine. Symptoms of overflow incontinence may include producing a weak stream of urine, or the sensation that the bladder is never completely empty.
Some medications can increase the risk of developing overflow incontinence.
Treatment Options for Incontinence
Discussing the Problem
Even minor incontinence can affect a man's sense of health and well-being. Despite this, many men may not discuss the problem with their physicians due to embarrassment or because they don't realize it's a common problem for which several treatment options exist.