Anatomical Incontinence in Women

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Topic Overview

Anatomical incontinence is the involuntary release of urine caused by structural problems of the urinary tract that affect the urine flow. This type of incontinence may be present from birth (congenital).

The main symptom is an almost continual release of urine.

The incontinence is caused by structural problems in the urinary tract that allow urine to leak past the muscle (sphincter) that keeps urine in the bladder. These problems include:

  • An abnormal pouch (diverticulum) in the wall of the urethra. Urine can become trapped in the pouch and then leak out.
  • An abnormal opening between the bladder and vagina. This is called a vesicovaginal fistula.
  • An abnormal opening between a ureter and the vagina. This is called a ureterovaginal fistula.

Treatment aims to correct the structural problem that is causing the release of urine.

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Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Avery L. Seifert, MD - Urology

Current as ofSeptember 9, 2014