Pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause affect the structure and function of the urinary system, as well as the supportive muscles. These life events may affect bladder and bowel control and lead to incontinence. Betsy Greenleaf, DO, FACOOG, FACOG, FPMRS, FAAOPM, MBA, is the first board-certified female urogynecologist in the United States and at Greenleaf Health & Wellness and The Pelvic Institute in Howell, New Jersey, she takes a holistic and integrative approach to care. She and her team use a combination of traditional, alternative, and cutting-edge treatments for incontinence to help you gain control over your bladder or bowel. Call the office or book an appointment online today.
Urinary incontinence occurs when you leak urine. The amount of urine leakage may range from a small drop to the entire contents of your bladder.
Women are more likely to develop urinary incontinence than men because of unique health events that affect their urinary system and pelvic floor muscles. These life events may weaken or damage these muscles, increasing the risk of urinary and bowel incontinence.
There are two common types of urinary incontinence in women:
With stress urinary incontinence, you may leak small amounts of urine from pressure on your bladder, such as coughing or lifting something heavy.
Urge urinary incontinence causes a strong and unexpected urge to urinate. The urge is so strong that you may leak urine before you reach the bathroom.
Bowel incontinence occurs when you accidentally leak fecal matter.
Urge fecal incontinence is the most common and causes a strong, uncontrollable urge to move your bowels and may cause bowel leakage before you reach the bathroom. Weak or damaged pelvic floor muscles could cause this type of incontinence.
Dr. Greenleaf takes a holistic approach to care, focusing on mind, body, and spirit. When you come in for an incontinence evaluation, she conducts a thorough exam to find the root cause of your problem.
Dr. Greenleaf asks detailed questions about your symptoms, gynecological history, medical history, and family history. She conducts a physical and pelvic exam and may run various tests to confirm or rule out a diagnosis.
Testing for incontinence may include:
The type of testing you need may depend on your symptoms and whether you have urinary incontinence, bowel incontinence, or both.
Dr. Greenleaf takes a patient-centered approach to care and develops personalized treatment plans for incontinence based on your diagnosis, the severity of your symptoms, and your personal preferences.
At Greenleaf Health & Wellness and The Pelvic Institute, Dr. Greenleaf uses a combination of traditional, alternative, integrative, and functional medicine to treat incontinence. Your treatment plan may include:
In most cases, medical treatments improve bowel and bladder control. However, if conservative measures fail to alleviate your incontinence symptoms, Dr. Greenleaf may talk to you about surgical intervention.
For compassionate care from an expert in the field, call Greenleaf Health & Wellness and The Pelvic Institute or book an appointment online today.