Urinary problems are very common in women between 20 – 80 years and may range from leaking of urine to frequent urination or urinary infections etc. Unfortunately, many women are shy or hesitant to discuss this with anyone, even their doctors. They continue to suffer in silence, which disables their social, psychological, occupational and sexual lives.
Causes may be many and are multifactorial, like
- A consequence of child birth
- A natural part of ageing
- Neurological problems
- Urinary infections
- Associated medical conditions like diabetes
Following are the symptoms:
- (Women leak urine when they laugh, exercise, cough or sneeze)
- Urge problems
- (This is a bladder control problem in which there is a sudden, uncontrollable urge to pass urine)
- Pain in the lower abdomen while passing urine (Dysuria)
- Inability to pass urine freely (Hesitancy)
- Burning sensation while passing urine
Apart from routine examinations some special investigations such as Urodynamic studies may be required to identify the exact cause.
Statistics reveal that 8 out of ten women who seek treatment get cured. Treatment options depend on the condition of the patient. Some options could be-
- Pelvic muscle rehabilitation exercise which could improve muscle tone and prevent leakage
- Some behavioral therapies and bladder training exercises (Bladder drills)
- Certain medications
- If the patient does not respond to the above, surgery is resorted to. A new minimally invasive procedure called Tension Free Vaginal Tape has long term cure rates and less post operative morbidity.
- Newer innovative approaches like certain injections applied locally under the weak area to give strength and Magnetic Enervation approach are coming up.