Magazine article USA TODAY

Obstructions May Cause Women's Incontinence

Magazine article USA TODAY

Obstructions May Cause Women's Incontinence

Article excerpt

A number of incontinent women diagnosed with "overactive bladder" may have bladder obstructions their doctors miss, a study by University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas urologists showed. Gary Lemack, assistant professor of urology, and Philippe Zimmern, the Helen J. and Robert S. Strauss Professor in Urology, analyzed 87 women who had experienced lower urinary-tract symptoms, including incontinence, and concluded that one-fifth had obstructions. The doctors put the women through a series of diagnostic tests to evaluate their bladder function more closely.

"By measuring bladder pressure and urinary outflow, we determined figures that allow us to predict which women might be obstructed," Lemack explains. "Twenty percent of the women in the study were found to have bladder obstruction, which is considerably higher than what has previously been believed."

Urinary symptoms in men are frequently caused, at least in part, by an obstruction--most frequently an enlarged prostate. In women, however, they are most commonly attributed to infection, prolapse, or a condition called overactive bladder. …

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