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Urinary Incontinence after Prostate Surgery

Urinary Incontinence is a medical condition in which the patient loses control of their bladder. The condition is common, especially among men who have had prostate surgery, and is a serious concern.

Men who go through prostate cancer surgery experience this condition in several cases. For example, when they cough, lift something, or sneeze too hard. This is what professionals call stress incontinence. Stress incontinence usually occurs because of undue stress on the bladder that the patient cannot contain.

A person may also experience urge incontinence in which they experience a sudden need to urinate. This is so quick that they usually do not have enough time to make it to the toilet.

Urinary Incontinence and Prostate Problems

When the urine reaches the bladder from the kidneys, it gets stored in small valves, called sphincters, that only open when your body signals them to do so. Surgeons need to remove one of the valves when they remove the prostate during the procedure.

Although one valve is enough for the body to control urination, men usually have urinary trouble after prostate surgery. Almost 6-8 percent of men experience this problem after prostate surgery.

How Long Can Incontinence Last?

How long urinary incontinence lasts depends on several factors, including your age, weight, type of incontinence, etc. However, on average, men who go through prostate surgery experience urinary incontinence for the first three months. They lose control over their bladder and have to use adult diapers to avoid any embarrassing situation.

The problem worsens if the patient ranges between the age group of 40-60. Some men even experience the problem as late as 6 months to a year when they go through prostate surgery.

Does Urinary Incontinence Happen After Radiation Too?

Although most people think that radiation treatment for prostate cancer is a good alternative to avoid urinary incontinence, it is not the case. While there is no incision in radiation treatment, the radiation can cause other problems. For example, most adults who go through radiation for prostate cancer treatment experience inflammation and pain in their urethra and urinary tract, which leads to urinary incontinence in some cases.

Is It Possible to Treat Urinary Incontinence after a Prostate Surgery?

Professionals suggest noninvasive surgeries and muscle strengthening exercises for the pelvis if the problems persist. These therapies and solutions help reduce the number of times you need to go to the bathroom to urinate. However, this solution works best for people who have mild symptoms.

Patients who cannot stop urine from leaking may need surgery besides using pads, incontinence wipes, or similar products for the problem. Let us take a look at these solutions in detail.

Treatment for Urinary Incontinence

Following are some of the treatment options that people suffering from urinary incontinence can consider to minimize their symptoms and the need for incontinence products.

Pelvic Floor Exercises

Pelvic exercises are a great way to strengthen the urethra and prostate muscles to prevent urine from leaking. Most health experts suggest these exercises can help control the need for urination.

Similarly, Kegel exercises strengthen the muscles to stop urine from passing. You can combine these exercises with a Biofeedback program to gain control over your health and involuntary body functions, in this case, incontinence.

Supportive Care

Dealing with urinary incontinence can be stressful and requires making behavior and lifestyle changes. These include drinking loads of fluid, avoiding the use of caffeine, and not trying to stop urinating. Some people may also need to lose weight to deal with this problem as it can help improve urinary function.

Similarly, patients may need to consult with a professional to avoid using any meds that may cause incontinence. Besides these simple lifestyle changes, some men may need incontinence mattresses if they lose bladder control and want to avoid any embarrassing situation. You may also choose waterproof mattress covers for incontinence for better protection and comfort while sleeping.

Surgery and Medicines

Getting injections and medication for urinary incontinency is a common solution as they help improve bladder function.

Artificial Sphincter

We already explained, during prostate surgery, the doctor removes one of the sphincters which causes problems for the patient to control their urine. However, patients can still opt for an artificial sphincter. It is a combination of three parts, a pressure-regulating balloon, a pump, and a cuff that covers the urethra.

The patient controls the whole setup and can choose when to release urine from the bladder. While the device helps almost 70% of the patients, they still need to use incontinence products to keep themselves clean and hygienic.

Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation

The electric stimulation method focuses on improving bladder function and retaining weak urinary muscles. The method involves sending a mild current to the nerves in the lower back or pelvic muscles involved in urination using an anal electrode. This current stays within the pain threshold and causes a contraction inside.

The stimulation causes the muscles to contract, producing a similar effect to kegel exercises. The frequent contraction strengthens the muscles and helps patients with urge incontinence, overactive bladder, and stress incontinence.

Bulbourethral Sling

The sling device helps compress and suspend the urethra and is usually made up of synthetic material or the patient’s natural tissue in some cases. Urethral compression helps in the treatment of urinary incontinence in males after prostate surgery.

Tips for Choosing Incontinence Supplies

It is difficult to choose incontinence supplies as there are several options in the market. However, when choosing incontinence products for an older adult in the family or yourself, you need to consider two factors.

  • Determine Leakage

    You should start by determining the amount of leakage your patient experiences. You can then choose a supply that can absorb it and ensure comfort. You should also consider the frequency of urination to choose a product accordingly.

  • Choose the Right Size

    Choosing a comfortable size diaper for the patient makes a huge impact. It’s better to go for a size bigger than what fits perfectly as the patient needs to wear the diaper all the time, which can cause irritation. A bigger size helps reduce skin problems thus making the care easier. However, make sure the incontinence product you choose is not too loose as it won’t help prevent leakage.

Incontinence Supplies Options

Choosing the right incontinence products can make all the difference for someone dealing with the problem. If you are a caregiver, you must choose high-quality products for the person you are taking care of as they are already dealing with a lot of pain.

Following are some of the product types that you can choose from for your nursing home or an individual dealing with urinary incontinence.

Incontinence Briefs

The incontinent briefs are a great option because they have excellent absorbent quality and help prevent leaks. On average, briefs that provide around 5-7 oz of liquid absorption work best for adults. This way, people suffering from urinary incontinence can still play, run, move, and exercise, and do other physical activities without the fear of visible marks on their clothing from leakage.

However, professionals suggest that choosing a size larger than the perfect fit works best for these patients. You can also choose from several subcategories like swim diapers and belted undergarments on reputable sites.

Choose briefs that have a composition of polyester and cotton to provide maximum ease to the patients.

These briefs work best for bedridden patients, who are difficult to deal with and don’t want to change their diapers frequently. The incontinence briefs also help against watery stools and frequently changing needs.

Having the right incontinence supplies is essential, even if you seek other treatment options. However, choosing the right supplies for your patients is a big concern, which is why Parentgiving brings the best incontinence products and supplies from the top manufacturers for patients and caregivers.

Skin Care Products

Skin problems are a big problem for people suffering from urinary incontinence as they can cause chafing and other skin complications. Luckily, there are plenty of skincare products like anti-fungal creams, skin repair creams, and several protective ointments that you can choose from for skincare products.

You can also go a step ahead and add Aloe Vera bathing cloths and waterproof incontinence bed sheets to ensure the patient does not have to deal with more problems than what they are already dealing with.

Make sure to check out the complete product categories on Parentgiving.com, and you will find many products to manage urinary incontinence. Plus, you will get a good deal on every product you need.

Sources

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/8096-prostate-cancer-urinary-incontinence-after-surgery

https://www.webmd.com/urinary-incontinence-oab/mens-guide/urinary-incontinence#2