If you are living with bladder leaks, you should know that medical treatments for stress urinary incontinence (SUI) are available that may bring much needed relief.
At Pelvital, we’ve introduced Flyte, a non-surgical, use-at-home option that strengthens the pelvic floor muscles to treat SUI. As a first-line treatment, Flyte will help many women to treat at home and avoid more expensive or inconvenient medical treatments for stress urinary incontinence.
According to the Office on Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor about other medical treatments if you aren’t able improve bladder leaks with home-based measures. Medical treatments include:
Medicine. After menopause, applying vaginal creams, rings, or patches with estrogen (called topical estrogen) can help strengthen the muscles and tissues in the urethra and vaginal areas. A stronger urethra will help with bladder control. Learn more about menopause treatments on the womenshealth.gov site.
Vaginal pessary. A reusable pessary is a small plastic or silicone device (shaped like a ring or small donut) that you put into your vagina. The pessary pushes up against the wall of the vagina and the urethra to support the pelvic floor muscles and help reduce stress incontinence. Pessaries come in different sizes, so your doctor or nurse must write a prescription for the size that will fit you. Another type of pessary looks like a tampon and is used once and then thrown away. You can get this type of pessary at a store that also sells feminine hygiene products.
Bulking agents. Your doctor can inject a bulking agent, such as collagen, into tissues around the bladder and urethra to cause them to thicken. This helps keep the bladder opening closed and reduces the amount of urine that can leak out.
Surgery. Surgery for urinary incontinence is not recommended if you plan to get pregnant in the future. Pregnancy and childbirth can cause leakage to happen again. The two most common types of surgery for urinary incontinence are:1
- Sling procedures. The mid-urethral sling is the most common type of surgery to treat stress incontinence. The sling is either a narrow piece of synthetic (man-made) mesh or a piece of tissue from your own body that your doctor places under your urethra. The sling acts like a hammock to support the urethra and hold the bladder in place. Serious complications from the sling procedure include pain, infection, pain during sex, and damage to nearby organs, such as the bladder. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports that in 1 out of every 50 patients who have synthetic mesh for urinary incontinence, the mesh moves after surgery and sticks out, into the vagina, causing pain. 2 The FDA recommends discussing treatment options with your doctor before surgery, and asking specific questions about side effects.
- Colposuspension. This surgery also helps hold the bladder in place with stitches on either side of the urethra. This is often referred to as a Burch procedure.
Source: Medical treatments content reproduced courtesy The Office on Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, womenshealth.gov, January 31, 2019., Accessed at
womenshealth.gov on June 12, 2020.
1 American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2017). Surgery for Stress Urinary Incontinence (PDF, 85 KB)
2 Food and Drug Administration. (2018). Considerations about surgical mesh for SUI.