Urinary incontinence – or accidental leakage of urine – is not a pleasant condition. It can occur for a number of reasons, such as older age, pregnancy and childbirth, surgery, obesity, urinary tract infections, or a chronic cough.
It may also occur as a result of stress incontinence – a condition where small amounts of urine leak out when a person does certain activities such as laughing, playing sport, lifting an object or sneezing. Bladder weakness may also occur in men following surgery in the form of urinary incontinence post prostatectomy.
When you have this problem, you might think that avoiding fluids will help. However, the opposite is more likely the case, in that dehydration can lead to irritation of the bladder. Drinking plenty of fluids can help to keep the bladder healthy, which may in turn help to reduce leakage.
What is ‘normal’?
Healthy urine should be pale yellow. When it is darker in colour, it may indicate dehydration, although some vitamin pills can change the colour of otherwise healthy urine. It’s also considered normal to pass urine four to six times per day and once during the night, and to be able to urinate without strain and to empty the bladder completely.
Prevalence of Urinary Incontinence in Men, Women
According to the Continence Foundation Australia, the condition may affect around 13% of men and 37% of women at some stage of their lives. Research shows that around 70% of people report not seeking treatment for urinary leakage, and that 50% of women aged 45-59 report having suffered some degree of incontinence.
Drinks That Can Make Incontinence Worse
While fluids can help to prevent incontinence, there are some drinks that can worsen the problem by irritating the bladder, particularly those that are acidic in nature.Read More »Food And Drink To Avoid With Urinary Incontinence
It is not unusual to have questions around penile implant surgery. Our patient education series are videos for patients dealing with Erectile Dysfunction (ED) produced by Katelaris Urology and feature Dr Katelaris as well as patients who have experience prostate cancer and erectile dysfunction.
This video features David Sandoe OAM and Pam Sandoe OAM, who survived prostate cancer surgery and decided to have a penile prosthesis to restore their Quality of Life as a couple. David is a former National Chairman of Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) and Pam Sandoe OAM is a former PCFA Prostate Cancer Support Group Co-Leader at Sydney Adventist Hospital, this is their ED story.
Life with a penile implant
David and Pam talk about what a penile implant feels like, what it looks like on the outside and the differences between having a penile implant compared to sex before experiencing Erectile DysfunctionRead More »Video: How does it feel to live with a penile implant?
|Kidney Stones: How to Pass a Kidney Stone by Having Sex|
Scientific researchers at a hospital in Turkey have recently found that sexual intercourse several times a week may provide an effective way to spontaneously pass kidney stones in male sufferers.Read More »Kidney Stones: How to Pass a Kidney Stone by Having Sex
Peyronie’s Disease Causes, symptoms and diagnosis
Peyronie’s disease is a condition in which plaques form in the erectile tissue of the penis. Over time this causes penile curvature, indentation, inflammation and shortening, and / or narrowing.
The plaques usually form on the top or upper side of the penis causing it to curve upwards. The condition occurs in approximately 3% of adult men, mostly in older men aged 50-plus.
Peyronie’s disease (PD) can cause sufferers some pretty unpleasant symptoms – from pain, discomfort and erectile problems to psychological symptoms such as anxiety.
Causes of Peyronie’s Disease
The causes are not always known or understood, but the following may have an impact in the development of the disease:Read More »A Guide To Peyronie’s Disease- Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
If you want to know how to keep kidneys healthy, water is a good step. Some years ago, Kidney Health Australia (KHA) put out a position statement on water. The statement, called ‘Drink Water Instead’, highlighted the importance of water in maintaining kidney health. This is because without adequate water, our kidneys suffer and cannot properly function.
What is the function of the kidneys?
The kidneys perform a role that is rather like a very efficient waste disposal unit. Without kidney function, we would die within a matter of days – which is clearly why we have two of them! Even if one fails, the other one can continue the job as long as it is healthy.
The main role of the kidneys is to filter out and collect waste materials – such as unwanted chemicals, excess fluid and unneeded nutrients – and combine them with water to create urine for elimination via the bladder. This filtering process can happen hundreds of times a day and yet most of us probably never give it a second thought – that is until we develop an uncomfortable problem such as a kidney stone, or a urinary tract infection!
The kidneys also have a number of other roles, including balancing the volume of minerals and fluids in the body, and producing hormones and enzymes that make red blood cells and are involved in the control of blood pressure and maintenance of bone health.
How to keep kidneys healthy
Keeping kidneys healthy is important. We tend to hear a lot about looking after our heart health and taking care of our skin and bones, but not much about the kidneys – even though our lives depend upon them!
Keeping well hydrated is essential, especially as between two and three litres of water is lost every day through elimination and also through the skin and lungs. Water is considered preferable to sugar-based drinks, as the latter may affect dental health and are also associated with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) when taken to excess.
How much water should we drink to keep kidneys healthy
As long as we are generally healthy, there are no set rules about how much water we should drink. It depends upon a number of factors such as environment and lifestyle. For instance, if someone lives in a tropical region, or does strenuous work or exercise, their fluid needs are going to be higher than those of someone living in a more temperate zone with a sedentary occupation.
At one time it was stated that all adults should drink at least two litres of water per day. However, the KHA position is that we should drink according to thirst, and that caffeinated and sugared drinks should be limited. There are some exceptions to this – for instance if someone has had a kidney stone, it is recommended that they drink at least two litres per day to reduce the risk of another one.
People with certain health conditions – including end-stage renal failure – may need to reduce their fluid intake in accordance with their doctor’s advice.
As well as getting adequate water each day, maintaining a healthy lifestyle through diet and exercise and quitting smoking if necessary can also help keep the kidneys in good health. Alcohol should be limited as it has a dehydrating effect on the body, and reducing salt may help to lower the risk of kidney stones.
If you suffer from kidney stones you should see your doctor or a kidney stone specialist to discuss treatments such as kidney stone removal and measures to reduce your risk level.Read More »The Importance of Water for Healthy Kidney Function