Urinary incontinence, also known as “UI,” can be a frustrating and embarrassing problem to deal with. Incontinence takes many forms in men and women, and there are many types of conservative treatments available. However, when these treatments fail, incontinence surgery is another option.
Here, you will learn about the differences in incontinence surgery for men and women, and how urinary incontinence surgery can fix the common problem and improve the quality of your life.
Treatment vs. Incontinence Surgery
Incontinence is far more common in women than men. Women are twice as likely to deal with some form of incontinence, and studies show that well over 30 percent of women over the age of 60 have incontinence issues. Women are more likely to have incontinence issues because of anatomy and the way the urinary tract is structured.
Before considering incontinence surgery, doctors will try to treat the problem through behavior management, biofeedback, medication and pelvic floor exercises and therapy. If these treatments don’t work or the problem is just too severe, urinary incontinence surgery becomes the next step.
Incontinence Surgery for Women
The most common incontinence surgery for women is form of a sling procedure. There are different types of slings, including:
- Tension-Free Transvaginal (TVT)
- Mini (TVT-Secure)
- Transobturator Tape (TOT)
Bladder neck suspension or bladder repositioning are two other types or incontinence surgery for women. Neck suspension surgery is designed to provide support to the bladder neck and urethra. A repositioning procedure will pull the bladder up to normal position.
Incontinence Surgery for Men
Incontinence may be less common in men, but it doesn’t mean that males of all ages and backgrounds don’t have to deal with the problem. In fact, men develop more cases of what is known as overflow incontinence than their female counterparts.
Overflow incontinence in men is generally caused by benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), otherwise known as an enlarged prostate gland. Nearly all men deal with BPH as they get older. BPH can usually be treated with medication, but incontinence surgery is an option for the most serious cases.
There are a few other different urinary incontinence surgery options for men, including:
- Bulbourethral Sling
- Urethral Bulking
- Artificial Sphincter
- Sacral Nerve Stimulation
As a general rule for men and women, urinary incontinence surgery is not considered unless it is the only option left to cure the problem.