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An involuntary leakage of urine when sneezing, coughing, lifting heavy objects or during physical exertion, but not accompanied by the urge to urinate, indicates a weakness in the bladder closure mechanism.
This malfunction of the bladder can lead to incontinence if a toilet cannot be reached within a couple of minutes. Since the leakage occurred with an urge to urinate, this form of involuntary leakage is called urge incontinence.
The bladder is intended to store urine without leakage over several hours. This is expelled by a contracting of the bladder wall, normally after the brain has sent a conscious start signal.
Common continence disorders include
The risk of stress incontinence increases with age and is far greater among women than men.
If an involuntary leakage of urine occurs with both an urge to urinate and during physical exertion, this is known as mixed incontinence.
Affected women typically describe a strong urge to urinate arising immediately after coughing or sneezing, when doing sport or even after laughing, which is hard to suppress and requires an immediate visit to the toilet.
Other trigger and causal factors
A wide variety of medical conditions and events can lead to problems of incontinence.
Urinary incontinence has a huge impact on a personís self-worth and quality of life. Any involuntary leakage of urine is extremely unpleasant and awkward for the person concerned.
Although it is far more widespread than assumed, incontinence is largely a taboo subject.
Under exertion, the bladder pressure exceeds the closure pressure of the urethral sphincter, resulting in an involuntary leakage of urine. This is attributable to a weak urethral sphincter.
In women, a weakness of the bladder sphincter and stress incontinence can be due to a lowering of the bladder and uterus, or a paralysis of the urethral sphincter. In men, a prostate operation is the most frequent cause of stress incontinence.
If, however, the bladder acts independently of the brain's control, it automatically contracts when a certain capacity level is reached and attempts to expel the urine.
An overactive bladder is generally the cause if the urge incontinence coincides with frequent urination during the day and at night.
Women aged 50 and over in particular are susceptible by this condition. One cause of mixed incontinence is overactivity of the bladder triggered by physical exertion.
It is already too late in many cases, and a not inconsiderable quantity of urine is expelled.
Stroke, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, dementia, neurological disease, traumatic brain injury, interstitial cystitis, prostate surgery, pelvic surgery and diabetes.
Frequent urination during the day.
Sudden, frequent and intensified urge to urinate.
Involuntary leakage of urine or urinary incontinence.
Incomplete emptying of the bladder.
Problems starting or initiating urination
Frequent urination at night.
Lack of sense of bladder filling/weak urge to urinate.
Hampered and incomplete emptying of the bladder.
Weak, interrupted urinary stream.
Painful bladder filling and emptying.
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