Interior Women's Health
Board Certified OB-GYNS, Midwives & Advanced Nurse Practitioners located in Fairbanks, AK
Being unable to control your bladder can be embarrassing and distressing, and can affect both your mental and physical health. At Interior Women's Health in Fairbanks, Alaska, Karl Baurick, MD, FACOG, and Doris Heilman, MD, FACOG, Debra Booysen, NP-C, and Amy Lasher, MSN, ANP, have extensive experience of helping women who are suffering from urinary incontinence. As well as performing the most advanced forms of surgery available for treating urinary incontinence, they also consult with world experts to provide you with the best possible outcomes from your treatment. Call Interior Women's Health today to find out more or use the online form to schedule a consultation.
Urinary Incontinence Q&A
What is urinary incontinence?
Urinary incontinence is a common problem in which you have difficulties retaining urine in your bladder. The result could be a small leakage of a few drops or completely emptying your bladder, depending on the type and severity of the incontinence.
Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) happens when you exert pressure on your bladder. Common triggers include:
Urgency urinary incontinence causes an immediate and uncontrollable need to urinate that leaves you very little (if any) time to get to a toilet.
You could have a combination of both stress and urgency urinary incontinence, which is known as mixed incontinence.
What causes urinary incontinence?
A variety of issues can lead to urinary incontinence. A common cause of stress urinary incontinence is pelvic floor weakness, most often as a result of childbirth. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) like cystitis are a leading cause of temporary urgency incontinence.
Other potential causes of urinary incontinence include:
- Diuretic medications
- Excess coffee or alcohol
- Pelvic floor disorders
- Chronic constipation
- Neuromuscular problems (faulty nerves)
- Bladder stones or growths
- Overactive bladder
To find the cause of your incontinence, the Interior Women's Health team first carries out a physical exam and discusses your medical history. You'll also need to provide a urine sample for urinalysis. Interior Women's Health has full onsite urodynamics facilities where you can undergo specialized testing to assess the function of your bladder and urethra.
What treatments are available for urinary incontinence?
The treatment you need for your urinary incontinence depends on the cause of your problem. Possible treatments could include:
- Bladder training
- Physical therapy
- Bladder support devices
- Mirabegron medication
- OnabotulinumtoxinA injections
- Urethral bulking
- Laser therapy
- Percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation (PTNS)
Minimally invasive laser therapy using the MonaLisa Touch® system can help treat urinary incontinence, particularly where the effects of menopause are causing the problem.
Would I need surgery for urinary incontinence?
In most cases, the Interior Women's Health team can resolve your urinary incontinence using nonsurgical methods. If, however, these aren't working, there are several surgical options.
Using your tissues or, in some cases, synthetic materials, your surgeon can create a sling to support and lift your urethra (the channel through which you urinate). Alternatively, your surgeon could perform a colposuspension procedure, placing stitches near the neck of your bladder to lift the urethra and hold it in place.
If your urinary incontinence is due to neuromuscular problems, sacral neuromodulation could help. Your surgeon places a wire beneath the skin on your lower back, close to the nerve that controls your bladder. An electrical device powered by batteries then sends signals to the nerve that improve bladder function.
Don't let urinary incontinence affect your quality of life. Call Interior Women's Health today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.