Urge incontinence

Urge incontinence is the accidental leaking of urine. This type of incontinence usually occurs when there is a sudden, strong urge to urinate and an inability to get to the toilet in time, but some people may leak urine without warning.

Overactive bladder is a kind of urge continence. But not everyone with overactive bladder leaks urine.

Causes of urge incontinence include age-related changes, Parkinson's disease, stroke, kidney or bladder stones, and some cancers. Coffee, tea, colas, chocolate, and acidic fruit juices can irritate the bladder and make urge incontinence worse.

Learned techniques to retrain the bladder are often helpful for urge incontinence. Medicines may also help, although they may have bothersome side effects.

Last Updated: September 17, 2008

Author: Sandy Jocoy, RN

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Avery L. Seifert, MD - Urology

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