New techniques and treatments are coming out all the time – it’s the innovative world we live in. Today, we are talking about a new therapy for urinary incontinence in senior citizens.
The elderly are at a much higher risk for urinary incontinence than any other population. Aging can affect incontinence for a variety of reasons, including:
· Childbirth – for women, childbirth can injure pelvic floor muscles, and these injuries may not present themselves until later in life.
· Prostate cancer – Men who have had prostate cancer treatment are at a higher risk for bladder incontinence.
· General aging – over time, muscles weaken – this includes the pelvic floor muscles. Aging of the bladder can lead to a decrease in its capacity.
There is also a link between dementia and incontinence, and dementia mainly affects older people. In fact, there are over 5 million Americans with some form of dementia. All of this means that the aging population is at the highest risk for bladder incontinence.
Rates of urinary incontinence are high in nursing homes, and this is usually managed with adult incontinence products. However, these products can lead to skin irritation, urinary tract infections (UTI), and they can affect the wearer mentally. It can be embarrassing to wear these products.
Professor Claudia Lai, of the School of Nursing at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, studied the effectiveness of Prompted Voiding (PV) for 31 months. PV is a behavioral strategy for bladder incontinence. It is non-invasive, and it is simple.
PV is quickly becoming one of the most effective measures for managing bladder incontinence in the elderly, especially in nursing home or home-care settings. It can also help to reduce the need for incontinence products.
How does PV work?
PV is a behavioral strategy. It works by caregivers reminding the elderly patients to go to the restroom regularly. This helps reduce the number of leaks and accidents, and it helps the patient to increase their awareness of bladder control. PV is simple, and has been adopted in many nursing home environments.
According to a study, “limited evidence suggested that prompted voiding increased self-initiated voiding and decreased incontinent episodes in the short-term.” PV is often recommended for patients with dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease. These studies do note that the long-term effectiveness of PV is not fully known, but did show that PV helped in the short term.
Are you a caregiver for someone with bladder incontinence? You may want to try a version of PV wherein you suggest a trip to the restroom every 2 hours or less.
If you or a loved one are suffering from bladder incontinence, contact us. Or call our discreet, dedicated Medical Concierge at 800-771-1953.