Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI)
Do you sometimes lose control of your urination? Do you find yourself enjoying a laugh with a friend, only to be followed by an unpleasant surprise?
There’s no need to feel ashamed! Often, the stigma surrounding female incontinence is due to its association with old age. However, this linked is misconceived: Urinary Stress Incontinence can and does affect women of all ages. And no matter what age you are, there is no need to continue living with the stress of hiding your accidents.
Fortunately, there is a highly effective and completely safe non-surgical treatment that outdoes all the other options available. For example, while vaginal-tightening exercises (like the Kegel) can help the problem in some cases, their efficacy is far from guaranteed.
Stress Incontinence Causes & Symptoms
- Urine leakage can be caused by excessive stretching and loss of elasticity, or a weakening of the connective tissue in the pelvic floor (located just above the urethra). These symptoms typically result from pregnancy and childbirth. As a result, the bladder sags on top of the urethra near the front of the vagina. This is not its natural position. As the urethra makes contact with the bladder, it gets in the way of the bladder’s ability to open and close effectively. Because of this internal imbalance, your normal everyday activities, like coughing or laughter, can cause urine to leak into the urethra and out.
- The other type is caused by a weakening of the sphincter, referred to as intrinsic sphincteric deficiency (ISD). The sphincter is a ring of muscles located at the bottom of the bladder: its function is to seal off the bladder and block the passage of urine. As the sphincter loses its ability to seal in the contents of the bladder, urine can pass into the urethra – unfortunately, it can happen when it’s most inopportune. Whether your incontinence results from ISD or from weakening of the pelvic floor, non-invasive laser treatment can have very positive results
Stress Incontinence Treatment
Your physician begins the procedure by inserting a laser speculum into your vagina. This instrument is a clear cylindrical tube and functions as a containing device for the rod-like component at the end of the laser device – this will be inserted inside the speculum. The machine sends out pulses of laser that last for mere micro-seconds. Remember that the device needs to target the tissues at the top of the urethra since it is these that are interfering with the opening and closing of the bladder. For this reason, the end of the machine possesses a 90-degree mirror. By being positioned at this angle, it can refract the beams from the laser upward. The doctor has full control of the back and forth motion of the laser, and so is able to target the places that have been most impacted by damaged tissue and loss of elasticity.
Laser techniques are non-invasive alternatives that do not cause any bleeding and does not involve sutures or scars. Incontilase™ is an advanced laser therapy option designed for the treatment of mild to moderate cases of Urinary Stress Incontinence. The objective of the therapy is to give more support to the bladder that has been weakened and to return normal control to urinary functions.
The second phase of the procedure happens without the help of the speculum or mirror. To strengthen connective tissue at the very front of the vagina, your doctor merely needs to gently spread the labia to expose the opening. The doctor then directs the laser pulses once again to the top of the vaginal walls.
Typically, you will be asked by your doctor to come in for two sessions so that the procedure is thorough. This also allows you to have a dialogue about your results from the first session. The treatment is done in an outpatient setting, meaning that you can leave on the same day after the procedure.
How does IncontiLase Work?
You may be wondering how this laser improves elasticity. The laser causes a controlled increase in temperature that has an instant effect, which is the shrinking of collagen and the vaginal mucosa, which are both found in the vagina’s inner lining. The process also stimulates the body to naturally regenerate connective tissues. This helps maintain the strength of the urethra and its inner lining without causing an imbalance to the position of the bladder. After all, you want the urethra to lend support to the bladder, but without its shape becoming unruly and interfering.
What to Expect After Incontilase™
Because there are no incisions involved in this procedure, recovery time is quite rapid. You will not even need antibiotics, since you will not shed any blood during the treatment. Another perk of this non-surgical option is that you can resume normal activity on the very next day.
Ultimately, the procedure is a highly beneficial one; its efficacy has already been statistically proven. For instance, clinical studies have shown that after 120 days of Incontilase™ therapy, 94% of clients report improvements to their conditions, and 70% report that they are completely dry. And due to the features like the “smooth mode” function in Incontilase™ therapy, clients remark that the laser pulses feel like a feather’s touch.
Book a Consult!
If you are interested in non-surgical laser treatment to greatly improve your incontinence, you may consider booking a consultation with an experienced practitioner at Clinic 360 in Toronto. You should check with your insurance provider to make sure the procedure will be covered, as it can depend. Since Incontilase™ is a relatively new treatment method, some insurance companies may be waiting for more scientific literature on it.