By Dr. Satyajeet P Pattnaik, Urology
Urinary incontinence is a health condition in men, which is caused by loss of bladder control. Urinary incontinence usually occurs in cases of medical conditions such as an enlarged prostate, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes, and may also occur after prostate surgery. Urinary incontinence is an irritating and embarrassing condition, but with proper treatment, it can be cured. There are several ways to treat this condition which include home remedies as well as medications and surgery.
Here are several methods used to treat urinary incontinence:
- Caffeine, soda and carbonated drinks cause irritation in the bladder and worsen the symptoms of urinary incontinence. Alcohol is a diuretic and increases the amount of urine too. So abstain from coffee, alcohol and soft drinks to make a difference.
- Dietary adjustments are required for the treatment of urinary incontinence. Several spicy and acidic food items can make urinary incontinence worse. Hence, you should avoid having such foods for some time.
- Urinary incontinence can lead to stress and you must get rid of it for better health. You can try relaxation techniques, such as meditation and breathing exercises. Biofeedback is another option by which you can observe your bladder muscle contractions on a monitor.
- You should try a behavioural technique known as bladder training. This would require you to urinate every half hour, in spite of not having the urge. Slowly try to increase the time in between the bathroom breaks.
- You need to flex your muscles to gain control over urinary incontinence. Kegel exercises can be practised as they boost the strength of your pelvic muscles.
- You should find the right muscles that are required to stop the passing of gas.
- Pads and disposable undergarments can be used by men. These help in containing leaks and also protect the skin from irritation and odour.
There are several medicines, which help in the treatment of urinary incontinence in men. Some of these work to relax muscles for preventing unwanted bladder contractions, while others help in blocking the nerve signals to the bladder. Drugs used for the shrinking and treatment of an enlarged prostate are also used as blocked by prostate lead to bladder irritation. Nowadays, more than 80% of cases of incontinence in males respond well to medications.
Surgery may be the ultimate option for the treatment of urinary incontinence. Options depend on the cause of incontinence. If it is because of obstructing prostate, prostate surgery by TURP / HOLEP is curative. If it is because of bladder overactivity, BOTOX injection in the bladder is useful.
If it is TRUE incontinence after radical prostate surgery then treatment includes a male sling or artificial urinary sphincter implantation. In sling operations, a type of material is wrapped around the urethra for compressing it. In Artificial sphincter implantation, a cuff is used in order to close the urethra. Urine is released by squeezing the pump to open the cuff. An Interstim device similar to a pacemaker is used to stimulate nerves, which help in relaxing the bladder and pelvic floor. The other treatment option available is ATOMS device implantation.