Once incontinence is properly evaluated, a treatment plan can be formulated to treat a patient's incontinence. There are a number of different treatments for incontinence. These can range from simple behavioral training exercises, to drugs and surgery. Each treatment plan is tailored to a patient's type of incontinence, personal needs and expectations, and medical condition.
Various treatments available can be classified into four main groups: behavioral therapies, drugs, devices, and surgery. Available behavioral therapies include Kegel exercises (exercises that strengthen the pelvic floor muscles) and biofeedback, a computerized training process that helps a patient become aware and control the muscles involved with urinating. Drugs include those that treat infections such as antibiotics; those that treat bladder spasms such as anticholinergic drugs; those that make tissue healthier in postmenopausal women such as estrogen, and many others. Devices — of which there are many — include pessaries, pads, plugs, clamps, and catheters. Surgical treatments can be as simple as a 20-minute office procedure to bulk up the sphincter muscle area, to complex surgical procedures that repair the support of the pelvic floor and bladder base area.
Urologists today have a range of treatment options for all types of incontinence problems, from the very simple to the complex. The field is rapidly evolving as advancing research clarifies the problems causing incontinence, and more importantly, illustrates the best ways of treating this condition using the variety of available therapies.