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Treatment Overview

The treatment you and your doctor choose depends on your type of urinary incontinence and how bad your symptoms are.

If there is no infection or cancer or other cause that could only be cured by surgery, treatment is done in stages.

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  • Behavioral strategies may be enough to control your symptoms. These include simple changes to your diet, lifestyle, and urinary habits. See Home Treatment for more information.
  • Medicines that treat infection or bladder muscle spasm may help.
  • Self-catheterization may help you manage overflow incontinence from a weak bladder or blockage. It may also be used if surgery is not the best option for you. When you need to drain your bladder, you insert a thin, hollow tube through your urethra into the bladder. To learn more, see Other Treatment.
  • Surgery is usually considered when it is the only treatment that can cure the incontinence, such as when the condition is caused by a bladder blockage.

Many men who have urge incontinence or overflow incontinence also have an enlarged prostate gland (benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH). For more information, see the topic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH).

What to think about

Exercise is important for your physical and emotional health. Even if being active causes some leakage, get regular exercise. It can help you manage stress and keep your muscles in tone.

Continence products absorb urine or apply pressure to keep urine from leaking. To learn more, see Other Treatment.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 06, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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