Procedures and Services
The Women’s Center for Bladder & Pelvic Health uses a range of diagnostic techniques. Based on your history and symptoms, your physician will determine which tests are best for you.
- One-day or three-day bladder diaries for patients to record fluid intake and output, urgency, frequency of leaks and activities that cause them
- Urinalysis to check for signs of infection or blood
- Urodynamic study, which measures urine flow, bladder storage capacity and muscle strength
- Cystoscopy, which allows the physician to examine the inside of your bladder using a small lighted camera that is inserted through the urethra (the tube through which urine is discharged)
- Pelvic Ultrasound, which allows physician to visualize pelvic anatomy such as the uterus and ovaries
All of these diagnostic procedures are outpatient procedures. The urodynamic study is performed by trained technicians. A cystoscopy is performed by a physician. The results are then evaluated by your physician.
Treatment Options for Urinary Incontinence
Urinary Incontinence is involuntary leaks due to stress on the bladder may happen with sneezing, coughing, laughing, or exercise. Urge incontinence, a sudden urge to urinate followed by the uncontrolled loss of urine, can occur along with stress incontinence.
Functional incontinence is related to physical or mental limitations such as severe arthritis or stroke. Overflow incontinence – a constant dribble of urine – happens when the bladder is unable to completely empty.
A complete assessment of diet and fluid intake is part of every treatment plan. In addition, your physician may recommend:
- Nutrition counseling (Healthy Bladder)
- Bladder retraining/structured physical therapy(including biofeedback and Kegel exercises)
Outpatient Surgical Treatments
- Placement of a mesh sling to help support the urethra
- Implantation of a device to stimulate the sacral nerve, which controls the bladder
Treatment Options for Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Pelvic Organ Prolapse is when the pelvic muscles weaken due to childbirth, chronic coughing, obesity, or the straining caused by constipation. When this occurs, organs such as the bladder, rectum, intestines, and uterus can fall out of position and bulge into the vagina. Prolapse causes discomfort, even pain, and may trigger incontinence.
The severity and effect of the prolapse as well as the patient’s general health are important considerations when choosing a treatment.
- Use of a removable support device (pessary)
- Kegel exercises for pelvic muscles Surgical Treatments
- Cystocele repair for bladder bulging into vagina
- Rectocele repair for rectum bulging into vagina
- Graft or mesh support when muscles are too weak to repair
Treatment Options for Painful Bladder Syndrome
Painful Bladder Syndrome is also known as interstitial cystitis. It is characterized by an inflammation of bladder tissue. Symptoms include a persistent and urgent need to urinate, frequent urination (especially at night), pain during intercourse, and pelvic pain that is often relieved with urination.
Painful Bladder Syndrome has many causes. The Women’s Center for Bladder & Pelvic Health offers multiple approaches to meet each patient’s unique needs.
- Medication – taken orally and/or placed directly in the bladder
- Nerve stimulation to relieve pelvic pain and reduce frequency
- Dietary changes
- Stretching of the bladder with water or gas
- Bladder retraining/structured physical therapy (including biofeedback and Kegel exercises)