How to Manage Urinary Incontinence After Prostate Surgery?

After prostate surgery, managing urinary incontinence involves pelvic floor exercises, timed voiding, and sometimes medication. Strengthening the muscles with exercises can help control bladder leaks. It’s also important to stay on a schedule for bathroom visits to reduce accidents.

The journey towards regaining control over one’s bladder function can be daunting, but with the right strategies and support, it is entirely possible to improve this condition significantly. This article aims to guide those who have undergone prostate surgery through the various methods available for managing urinary incontinence, focusing on practical and effective solutions.

Pelvic Floor Exercises

One of the most effective ways to manage urinary incontinence after prostate surgery is through pelvic floor exercises, commonly known as Kegel exercises. These exercises strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which support the bladder and help control urination. By regularly performing pelvic floor exercises, many men experience significant improvements in their ability to control urination.

To perform a Kegel exercise correctly, one should first identify the right muscles, which can be done by trying to stop urination mid-flow. Once identified, these muscles should be contracted for three seconds, followed by a three-second relaxation. It’s recommended to perform three sets of ten repetitions each day. Consistency is key, and improvements are usually observed after several weeks of regular exercise.

Bladder Training

Bladder training is another effective method for managing urinary incontinence. This technique involves gradually increasing the intervals between bathroom visits, training the bladder to hold urine for longer periods. Starting with small increments, such as waiting an extra 15 minutes before going to the bathroom, can gradually extend the time between bathroom visits. Bladder training helps in improving bladder control and reducing the frequency of incontinence episodes.

Lifestyle Changes

Lifestyle changes play a crucial role in managing urinary incontinence. Maintaining a healthy weight, engaging in regular physical activity, and avoiding activities that strain the pelvic floor, such as heavy lifting, can all contribute to better bladder control. Additionally, smoking cessation is recommended, as smoking can aggravate incontinence symptoms.

Fluid Management and Caffeine Reduction

Proper fluid management is essential for those dealing with urinary incontinence. Drinking too little can lead to concentrated urine, which irritates the bladder, while drinking too much can overwhelm the bladder’s capacity. Aim for a balanced intake of fluids throughout the day, and consider reducing or eliminating caffeine, as it can increase urine production and irritate the bladder.

Use of Absorbent Products

While working on improving bladder control, absorbent products can provide security and comfort. A wide range of products is available, from pads and guards to more absorbent underwear. These products can help manage leaks, allowing individuals to continue their daily activities with confidence.

Surgical Options

For some men, surgical options may be considered if other methods have not provided sufficient relief. Procedures such as the sling surgery, where a synthetic mesh is used to support the urethra, or an artificial urinary sphincter, a device that controls the flow of urine, can be effective solutions. Consulting with a healthcare provider is essential to discuss the benefits and risks of these surgical options.

Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy

Pelvic floor physical therapy is a specialized form of therapy aimed at strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. A trained physical therapist can provide personalized exercises and techniques to improve pelvic floor function. This therapy often includes biofeedback, which helps patients understand and control their pelvic floor muscles more effectively.


In some cases, medication may be prescribed to manage urinary incontinence. Medications can help relax bladder muscles or tighten the sphincter muscles, depending on the type of incontinence experienced. It is important to discuss potential side effects and benefits with a healthcare provider.

Scheduled Toileting

Scheduled toileting, also known as timed voiding, involves going to the bathroom at set times throughout the day, rather than waiting for the urge to urinate. This can help prevent accidents and train the bladder to a regular schedule. Starting with frequent bathroom visits and gradually increasing the time between visits can effectively manage incontinence.

In conclusion, managing urinary incontinence after prostate surgery requires a multifaceted approach that includes pelvic floor exercises, bladder training, lifestyle modifications, fluid management, and possibly medical or surgical interventions. By adopting these strategies and working closely with healthcare providers, individuals can significantly improve their quality of life and regain control over their bladder function.