Dr. Kevin Stepp, MD - Urogynecology and Robotic and Laparoscopic Surgery - Carolinas HealthCare System - Mercy Hospital
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Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Urinary Incontinence
Fecal Incontinence
Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery
Uterine Fibroids
Ovarian Cysts
Minimally Invasive Hysterectomy
Single Incisiion Laparoscopy
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Urinary Incontinence is a very common problem. Many women leak urine on occasion. In fact some estimate that 40-60% of women will have to deal with urinary incontinence at some point in their lives. For most, the leakage is mild. But for some, it can be severe. However, as any woman who has experienced an embarrassing accident knows, even relatively infrequent leakage can significantly affect her quality of life. Many women are told that this is a normal part of aging, however Dr. Stepp believes that women should not have to live with urinary incontinence. Urinary incontinence can be categorized in two types: Overactive bladder or Stress Incontinence. Patients with overactive bladder will often have frequent urination or a strong urge to urinate that is difficult to defer and may lead to urinary incontinence. Stress incontinence refers to leakage of urine with increased pressure on the bladder such as with laughing, coughing, sneezing, running, or exercising. When patients have symptoms of both types, it is called mixed urinary incontinence. It is important to determine which of these types the patient has because the treatment will differ.

Overactive Bladder

Patients with overactive bladder may benefit from behavior modification, pelvic floor physical therapy, biofeedback, and exercises or medications. Dr. Stepp has a team of certified nurse practitioners specializing in incontinence and pelvic floor therapy. In difficult cases, minimally invasive procedures such as bladder botox injections or neuromodulation with Interstim therapy can help.


Stress Urinary Incontinence

Stress Incontinence is very common and often the result of trauma to the pelvis that may have occurred during pregnancy and childbirth. First line therapy is often pelvic floor physical therapy and exercises. There are no good medications for stress urinary incontinence in women. Once women have completed their childbearing, many will be a candidate for a minimally invasive outpatient procedure to support the urethra and muscles that control continence with a sling. These procedures are well tolerated, have very good success rates and are performed on an outpatient basis in 15 minutes or less. Often patients can resume normal exercise and activity within two weeks. These procedures were developed about 10 years ago and studies suggest that over 90% of patients are still satisfied with their sling.

If you are experiencing bothersome or embarrassing urinary incontinence, contact Dr. Stepp for more information.