Prostate Surgery and Incontinence in Men
Urinary incontinence is a common symptom in men who have prostate cancer, surgery, or other related medical issues. Prostate related issues can lead to a number of different types of incontinence such as:
- Stress Incontinence: the involuntary leakage of urine during physical acitivity, such as exercise, coughing, sneezing, or laughing
- Urge incontinence: a strong, sudden need to urinate accompanied by involuntary leakage
- Persistent incontinence : a small volume of urine that is leaked continuously or sporadically throughout the day
The prostate is a gland found in men that is approximately the size and shape of a walnut. It is found around the urethra below the bladder. As men age, the prostate gland commonly becomes enlarged in size, which can result in Benign Prostatic Hyperlasia (BPH) or Prostatic Hypertrophy. As it becomes larger the prostate puts pressure on the urethra and thus decreases the flow of urine through it, which often leads to a urine stream that is sporadic, interrupted or weak (ie. a dribble). An increased frequency of urination is often experienced as well.
When the prostate is removed or undertaking external beam radiation, it disrupts the way the bladder holds urine, which can lead to decreases in the capacity of urine that the bladder can hold. This may be experienced in tandem with spasms that result in urine leakage. Surgery can also result in collateral damage to the nerves that function to control the bladder.
Incontinence resulting from prostate issues can be either temporary or permanent. Incontinence can be managed through guidance from a professional healthcare practitioner and incontinence products such as Male Guards, absorbent pads and underwear, or adult diapers. These products can be worn discreetly inside normal underwear or beneath your pants, and can help you effectively and comfortably manage your incontinence.
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