“I never think about it anymore. Ever. If only I had done it sooner.”
– Carol, 53
If you are experiencing any symptoms of bladder leakage, ask your general practitioner (GP) or gynecologist (OB/GYN) to refer you to a specialist to discuss treatment options. They can help you find a gynecologist, urogynecologist or urologist that focuses on the treatment of urinary incontinence.
Before scheduling your surgery, ask your surgeon about all stress urinary incontinence treatments, including non-surgical and surgical options. It is important to understand why your specialist is recommending a particular treatment for your urinary incontinence.
Be sure to ask your surgeon about any specialized training they’ve received in the surgical treatment of urinary incontinence and overall patient experiences.
Finding the right physician to treat your stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is a very important step in seeking treatment. There are several specialists that may treat SUI, but even within each specialty, there will be physicians who specialize in certain conditions and treatment options.
Taking time to do your research can make all the difference in the care you receive. Remember to ask questions, get references and ask doctors about their success rates for each procedure you consider. Be your own advocate to find the best fit for you.
Remember to ask any questions you have to help you feel confident in your health care provider. Seek information on health care provider review sites and ask to speak to past patients, if possible. You should feel completely comfortable with your choice of doctor.
Sling procedures may be performed as an outpatient20 surgery in a hospital, in an ambulatory surgical center (ASC) or sometimes in a physician’s office, depending on your specific type of surgery23. Your physician will choose the right setting based on your needs. Be sure to follow your doctor’s pre-surgical instructions.
During the procedure, your doctor will place the sling beneath your urethra; this provides support to help it stay closed when there is stress on the bladder, such as when you cough, laugh or sneeze19. In many cases, a sling procedure takes 30 minutes or less24.
After the procedure, your doctor may recommend restricting certain activities for a period of time. Your doctor will discuss your specific post-surgical care plans with you in detail.