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Treatment for Mixed Incontinence continued...

Vaginal Devices: For stress incontinence in women, doctors may prescribe a device called a pessary that is inserted into the vagina to reposition the urethra and reduce leakage. For mild stress incontinence, inserting a tampon or a contraceptive diaphragm -- prior to exercise or activities that are likely to lead to leakage -- may offer a similar benefit.

Compression Rings and Clamps: For men, these devices fit over the penis to close off the urethra. They must be removed before going to the bathroom.

Injections: To minimize leaking from stress, doctors may inject bulking agents into tissues around the bladder neck and urethra. The procedure takes about a half hour and is done with local anesthesia. Because the body may eliminate certain bulking agents over time, repeat injections may be necessary.

Surgery: If your bladder has dropped because of childbirth or other reasons, your doctor may recommend one of several different surgeries to support the bladder and return it to its normal position. Two commonly used types of surgical procedures are:

  • Retropubic suspension, which involves placing sutures to support the bladder neck
  • Sling procedures, which are performed through a vaginal incision and involve using a strip of your own tissue or other materials to create a hammock to support the neck of the bladder

Although no treatment can completely cure mixed incontinence, for most people who seek treatment, a combination of measures can bring relief.

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