Urinary Incontinence (Loss of Bladder Control) Treated in Baltimore

The Urology Center at Mercy - Baltimore, MD

The Urology Specialists of Maryland at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, Maryland, offer patients a dedication to comprehensive care. Our urologists cover a broad spectrum of urologic disorders including urinary incontinence. 

About the Condition

Urinary incontinence is a common problem, especially for older adults. It is the accidental leakage of urine which can result from coughing, laughing or sneezing (stress incontinence) or from the sudden urge to get to the bathroom (urge incontinence). The severity of the problem can range from small dribbles to an outpouring of urine causing embarrassing problems.  Sometimes, a urinary tract infection can cause urinary incontinence and be treated and resolved easily. 

NEXT: Symptoms & Diagnostic Process ›
Symptoms & Diagnostic Process

Urinary incontinence can be caused by everyday habits, physical issues or medical conditions. Stress incontinence is a result of weak muscles in the lower urinary tract. For women, pregnancy, childbirth, weight gain and menopause are contributing reasons for weakened muscles. Urinary incontinence can also result from damage or problems in the urinary tract or in the nerves that control urination. 

An overactive bladder can cause urge incontinence and it may be due to an irritation of the bladder, emotional stress or other medical conditions like a stroke or Parkinson’s disease.  In all cases, the release of urine is the primary symptom.

To help diagnose urinary incontinence, our doctors may request a blood test or urinalysis to check for infection, chemicals and signs related to causes of incontinence.  Patients may also be asked to record liquid intake, urination frequency, amount of urine, urge to urinate and frequency of leakage over a few days to help discover patterns in urine loss.

If these simple tests indicate something more serious, other tests may be performed including:

  • A PVR measurement
  • An ultrasound
  • Stress test
  • Urodynamic testing
  • Cystogram
  • Cystoscopy
NEXT: Treatment Options ›
Treatment Options

Treatment options will depend on the type of incontinence, severity and possible causes for the urine loss. In most cases lifestyle changes like losing weight, minimizing caffeine consumption, quitting smoking or simple Kegel exercises that strengthen the pelvic muscles can control incontinence. Our doctors may prescribe bladder training exercises or medication also. Women may be candidates for medical devices that help control the problem such as:

  • Urethral insert to prevent leakage
  • Pessary ring to hold up the bladder to prevent leakage

Treatments may vary but most people can be helped or cured from urinary incontinence.