Most of us will experience incontinence to varying degrees no matter what type of primary treatment we elect. If we have surgery, the incontinence will start immediately while those of us whom use radiation therapy will only begin to effected as time goes on.

Fortunately, most of us do regain bladder control, some of us will again find complete control while others will regain different levels, but less than complete control. However, some of us will not be able to gain adequate control to allow us to function without using multiple numbers of pads. Life can become difficult, frustrating, debilitating and very demoralizing for those of us who are in this situation. Even those of us who are subject to lack of urine control just because we cough, sneeze, and laugh or just lift something could find this weighs heavily on our life.

There is medical help available for our problem; a male sling can often help us to control this out of control urine. Many major hospitals now have a subspecialist in reconstructive urology who can surgically “install” a sling to allow us to recapture urinary control.

Slings have been used widely for years in women to improve urinary control; they are a relatively new treatment for men. Originally, slings were anchored to the pelvis with small bone screws to secure them, but that was painful for many patients.

Now there is available a newer type of sling called the AdVance sling. It involves passage of a thin strip of mesh between pinpoint incisions on the inner thighs, which is then passed deep beneath the bottom of the urethra to increase support in precisely the area where the tissues are weakened. This additional flow resistance prevents the leakage of urine when abdominal pressure increases. The procedure is best suited for mild to moderate urinary incontinence, usually defined as patients who wear one to four pads per day to absorb any leakage.

No longer will you have to just cope, by restricting your activities or limiting your fluid intake. The sling now offers you a chance to return your normal daily activities with minimal or no pain.

Don’t suffer in silence, speak to your doctor to get a referral.

Joel T Nowak MA, MSW