Urinary incontinence

Urinary incontinence can be a consequence of treatment, including surgery and radiation for several different types of cancer. The most common causes of incontinence are surgery in or near the pelvic region, prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, cancer of the urethra, bladder cancer, gynecological cancers that affect a woman’s reproductive system, menopause caused by cancer treatment and brain or spinal cord cancer that may affect the nerves that control urination.

Treatments for cancer can also cause incontinence:

  • Radiation to the pelvic area.
  • Chemotherapy that causes nerve damage and hormonal changes.
  • Surgery to the pelvic area
  • Medications that stimulate urine production and can make incontinence even worse.

Treatments for this condition usually involves bladder training, such as learning how to delay voiding, fluid and diet management, and improving control over the muscles involved in urination. In extreme cases, surgery, catheterization and Botox can also be used to improve control.