People with stress urinary incontinence (SUI) should seek medical advice and treatment early. A screening (to check if you are prone to or have SUI) and prevention clinic is available to detect the problem early, which could help prevent the need for surgery. This is important as the more severe the condition, the lower the success rate of the surgery.
If surgery is required, it is mandatory for many urogynaecologists to perform a computer test of the bladder, called urodynamic studies, prior to the surgery to select the best and correct procedure for the patient.
There are many surgical treatments for SUI, with 30% – 40% success rates for some older surgeries, and over 90% for newer ones. It is important to select the most suitable surgery type to treat your SUI, as the success rate decreases with each subsequent surgery. The gold standard these days is the tension-free vaginal tape (TVT), a short and simple surgery with a success rate of above 90%. In the right surgeon’s hands, there is minimal pain and complications. You can even have it done as a day procedure.
The average life expectancy has gone up to 83 – 85 and people now have many more good years to live. Ladies, do not suffer in silence. A lot can be done to improve or cure the problem of urinary leakage.
Infographic reviewed by Dr Christopher Chong, obstetrician & gynaecologist at Gleneagles Hospital