Stress Incontinence - What is it?
Stress urinary incontinence (or SUI) is the involuntary loss of urine during coughing, laughing or physical exertion. SUI occurs when the muscles that hold urine in the bladder are not strong enough. When the pressure inside the bladder rises during activity or coughing, urine is squeezed out. The main muscles responsible for controlling the urine are the sphincter muscles and the pelvic floor muscles.
SUI is a very common condition affecting 10% of women. If often occurs after childbirth due to stretching and weakening of the muscles and ligaments which normally help to support the bladder.
It is such a common condition that many women assume it is just "one of those things" and so don't ever seek treatment. However, studies have shown that incontinence is a major cause of anxiety and unhappiness.
When performed by a specialist with appropriate training, surgery for stress incontinence can be highly effective with success rates around 80%.
Incontinence in Men
Incontinence also affects men as well as women. Sometimes men can develop urinary incontinence after prostate surgery. Follow this link for more information about Post Prostatectomy Incontinence.