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Urologic Dysfunction After Menopause (cont.)

Urologic Dysfunction After Menopause Medical Treatment

Urinary tract infections

Both simple and complicated urinary tract infections are typically treated with antibiotics as an outpatient treatment. The type of antibiotic and length of treatment depends on lower versus upper urinary tract infection and severity of infection. If a woman is very ill and has other symptoms, such as vomiting causing dehydration, kidney stones, or a urinary catheter in place, she may be hospitalized to receive intravenous (IV) antibiotics.

Bladder control problems

People with bladder control problems have a wide range of treatment options available to them, based on type of incontinence and severity. A woman's involvement in the treatment impacts the success.

For urge incontinence, the treatment addresses the underlying cause. A woman may be instructed to limit fluid intake, try behavioral therapy, use timed voiding and bladder training techniques, and/or practice pelvic floor exercises.

Medical treatment may not cure stress incontinence but may improve symptoms in 88% of those who have the condition. Medical approaches include achieving weight loss and practicing Kegel exercises. A woman may be instructed to strengthen pelvic floor muscles using a device called a weighted vaginal cone. The doctor may also recommend using a urethral plug. This tampon-like device is inserted into the urethra to block urine flow. A pessary, a device inserted into the vagina to support the bladder, may also be suggested.

Bladder prolapse

Treatment for prolapsed bladder depends on the grade. Grade 1, or the least severe, may require no treatment at all other than to avoid heavy lifting and straining. Medical treatments for more severe prolapse include using a pessary inserted into the vagina to support the bladder, using electrical stimulation to target and strengthen pelvic muscles, using biofeedback to monitor pelvic floor muscle activity, and tailoring exercises to strengthen these muscles.

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