Stress Urinary Incontinence

Stress Urinary Incontinence, or SUI, afflicts approximately 18 million adults in the United States, 85% of them being women. Sufferers of incontinence typically wait 4-6 years before seeing a healthcare professional about this condition.

If you suffer from SUI, you are not alone!


Symptoms of Stress Urinary Incontinence

Stress urinary incontinence is the involuntary loss of urine during physical activity, which may include but is not limited to:

  • coughing
  • laughing
  • lifting

Incontinence occurs when the muscles that support the urethra (the tube that carries urine out of the body) are weakened or damaged. This can happen as a result of childbirth, trauma, hormone changes and many other reasons.

You don’t have to live like this.

Stress Urinary Incontinence can be treated both surgically or nonsurgically.


Types of Stress Urinary Incontinence

Hypermobility (“Hyper” means too much and “mobility” refers to movement) can result from childbirth, previous pelvic surgery or hormonal changes. Hypermobility occurs when the normal pelvic floor muscles can no longer provide the necessary support to the urethra. This may lead to the urethra dropping when any downward pressure is applied, resulting in involuntary leakage.
Normal functioning anatomy
A weakening of the muscles supporting the urethra causes the urethra to drop during physical activity, resulting in urine leaking. 
Intrinsic sphincter deficiency, or ISD, refers to the weakening of the urethral sphincter muscles or closing mechanism. As a result, the sphincter does not function normally regardless of the position of the bladder neck or urethra. 

Treatment Options

Stress urinary incontinence can be treated in several ways, depending on the exact nature of the incontinence and its severity. As disease state and anatomy differs for each patient, outcomes may vary.

Consult your physician for all available treatment options. You and your physician may discuss:

  • Changes to your diet and fitness routine
  • Physical therapy including pelvic floor muscle training
  • Vaginal pessaries
  • Surgical options including mid-urethral slings, retropubic colposuspension, and urethral bulking

Did you Know?

As many as 1 in 3 women will experience a pelvic floor disorder such as stress urinary incontinence.