What is Overflow Incontinence?

What is Overflow Incontinence?

Overflow incontinence is a common bladder condition that causes urine to leak uncontrollably. This can be embarrassing, and affect your quality of life.

It can also lead to skin irritation, sores and other complications. It’s important to get a diagnosis from your doctor so that treatment can be started.


Overflow incontinence is the leakage of urine when your bladder isn't emptying completely. It's often caused by a blockage in your bladder or urethra (the tube that carries urine out of your body) and is more common in men than women.

The first step in diagnosis is a visit to your GP. They will ask about your symptoms and may do a pelvic or rectal examination.

Afterwards, they may run tests to find out what's causing your problem. These tests can include blood tests, urine samples and a bladder scan.

If the cause is a blockage, surgery may be recommended. Usually, it involves making the prostate smaller and relieving pressure on the urethra.

Overflow incontinence can also be a symptom of an underlying condition, such as diabetes, nerve damage or spinal cord injury. These causes of incontinence can often be treated by medicine and lifestyle changes. For example, you might be able to improve your symptoms by reducing the amount of fluids you drink or doing bladder exercises.


Overflow incontinence can be managed with medications and at-home behavioral training. Medications such as alpha-blockers can reduce bladder overflow and help you to urinate more completely.

Your doctor will recommend a course of treatment that is right for you. They will also discuss other treatments that can improve your quality of life, such as low-dose topical estrogen treatment or diVa Vaginal Laser Therapy.

In most cases, overflow incontinence is due to a blockage or weakened detrusor muscle. This is most often seen in men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or prostate cancer, but it can also occur with other conditions such as severe genital prolapse and postsurgical obstruction.

The diagnosis is made by obtaining a thorough history and physical examination and performing urinalysis, postvoid residual volume measurement and voiding diaries. In addition, a pelvic exam may be performed to rule out genital organ prolapse or prior surgery for UI.


Overflow incontinence is a form of urinary incontinence where urine leaks out when the bladder is full. It is very common and occurs more often in men than women, although some females have it as well.

Usually, overflow incontinence is caused by an enlarged prostate. This puts pressure on the urethra, the long tube that carries urine from the body to the bladder.

This can make the urethra become weak and cause it to squeeze harder than it should, resulting in the involuntary leaking of urine.

A doctor can help you find the cause of overflow incontinence through a physical exam and urine tests. He or she may also order a catheter stress test.

In some cases, your doctor can prescribe medications to reduce the frequency of your urination. Other treatments include neuromodulation, which sends electrical pulses to nerves that control your bladder and pelvic floor muscles.

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Lifestyle Changes

Overflow incontinence is a common condition that occurs when the bladder is overfull or you can’t empty it completely during urination. It can be caused by a weak bladder, a blockage in the urethra (the tube that leads to the toilet), or a problem with the prostate gland.

Fortunately, there are many ways to help with Overflow Incontinence. These include double voiding, scheduled toilet trips and fluid and diet management.

Behavioural interventions are an effective treatment for both overactive bladder (OAB) and urgency urinary incontinence (UUI). They consist of patient education, lifestyle modifications and behavioural training techniques that improve symptoms through re-establishing normal voiding intervals.

These behavioural strategies may be the first approach to consider in patients experiencing OAB and/or UUI. They are well-suited to the primary care setting and can be used in conjunction with other treatment approaches. They are aimed at improving symptoms through re-establishing normal voiding periods, eliminating bladder irritants from the diet, managing fluid intake and weight control, as well as encouraging bowel regularity and smoking cessation.