Legacy Physical Therapy 2961 Dougherty Ferry Road Saint Louis, MO 63122
Call: 636-225-3649 Fax: 888-494-7074 Email: info@legacytherapystl.com

Incontinence

Women of all ages may experience an uncontrolled loss of urine, called urinary incontinence. Leakage can be caused by weakening of the pelvic floor muscles, which form a sling around the vagina (birth canal), the urethra (tube from the bladder), and the rectum. Weakened pelvic muscles can be caused by aging, pregnancy, child birth, chronic constipation, and chronic coughing. 

If you suffer from urinary incontinence, you are not alone. An estimated 25 million Americans suffer from urinary incontinence. The good news is that most cases of incontinence can be cured or improved with proper diagnosis and treatment. Working together, your physician and your physical therapists at Legacy Physical Therapy can help you improve or eliminate your incontinence.

Types of Incontinence:

  • Stress Incontinence: The involuntary loss of urine occurring with simple activities such as laughing, coughing, sneezing, lifting, or sudden movements
  • Urge Incontinence: The involuntary loss of urine associated with a strong urge to urinate
  • Mixed Incontinence: A combination of stress and urge incontinence
  • Fecal Incontinence: An impaired rectal sensation or lack of muscle control that results in loss of stool or staining of underclothes. 

How Physical Therapy Can Help:

During your initial visit, a physical therapist will conduct a variety of diagnostic tests to assess the strength, coordination, and integrity of your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles. Based on these findings, your therapist will design a personalized program for you.

Typical treatment interventions may include:

  • Muscle re-education (abdominal and pelvic floor) 
  • Retraining of activities that stress your pelvic floor
  • Postural education
  • Changing diet to avoid bladder irritants
  • Biofeedback/Surface electromyography (EMG)
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Bladder retraining
  • Vaginal weights