Stress urinary incontinence is a condition wherein which urine leaks out with sudden pressure on the bladder and urethra, according to the Urology Care Foundation, a 22,000-strong member organization committed to advancing urology research and education, headquartered in the community of Linthicum in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. A urology specialist with decades of experience in the field, Dr. Cletus Roy Georges explains more about the issue and the associated condition known as ‘overactive bladder.’
“In mild cases, the pressure which causes stress urinary incontinence may be the result of sudden forceful activities, such as sneezing or exercise, as well as coughing or laughing,” explains Dr. Georges, an experienced urology specialist based in Orlando, Florida.
Also known as ‘SUI,’ stress urinary incontinence is a particularly common bladder problem among female patients. “Although occurring rather less frequently in men, male patients may be affected by SUI, too,” adds Dr. Georges.
In more severe cases, patients may experience the effects of stress urinary incontinence when enduring even routine, non-forceful, day-to-day activities such as walking, standing up, or bending over. “The result,” explains Dr. Georges, “can range from a few drops of leaked urine to enough to soak through a patient’s clothes.”
Often associated with another common bladder problem, known as ‘overactive bladder’ or ‘OAB,’ those with the latter condition typically experience an urgent need to urinate which they can’t control. “The main difference, however, between stress urinary incontinence and overactive bladder,” Dr. Georges explains, “is anatomical.”
“That’s because,” he continues, “stress urinary incontinence is a strictly urethral problem, while overactive bladder is a problem centered around the bladder itself.”
Many people with stress urinary incontinence, Dr. Georges goes on to reveal, also suffer from overactive bladder. “This is known,” he says, “as ‘mixed incontinence.'”
Male patients are more likely to suffer from overactive bladder than stress urinary incontinence. “Where stress urinary incontinence is an issue in male patients,” explains Dr. Georges, “it is often due to prostate cancer surgery, or damage or injury to the pelvic nerve.”
In the United States, around one in three women will likely suffer from stress urinary incontinence at some point in their life, according to the Urology Care Foundation. “Established more than three decades ago, the foundation is now a leading advocate in urologic health in the United States and globally, uniquely qualified to speak on behalf of urology specialists such as myself,” says Dr. Georges of the organization.
Becoming more prevalent with age, predominantly affecting those aged 60-65 and above, therapeutic options available to address stress urinary incontinence include behavioral modification and pelvic floor exercises, as well as surgical intervention, according to Dr. Georges. “With regards to overactive bladder and urge incontinence, meanwhile,” he adds, wrapping up, “further to behavioral modification, other treatment options include InterStim therapy, Botox, pharmacological intervention, and percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation.”
Cletus Roy Georges, MD graduated from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan with a bachelor’s degree in zoology with a biomedical option in 1987. Georges subsequently attended Weill Cornell University Medical College in New York City, graduating in 1991 and completing his residency in urology at Chicago’s Northwestern University McGaw Medical Center in 1997. Shortly after that, urology physician Dr. Georges started his practice in Sebring, Florida before relocating to Orlando, where he remains settled today.