What Is Transient Incontinence?

Defining This Temporary Form of Urinary Incontinence

Mature woman holding handkerchief about to sneeze,
Getty Images/Betsie Van der Meer

Have you ever had a cold and leaked urine when you coughed or sneezed? If you have, then you have experienced transient incontinence: a temporary type of urinary incontinence caused by an illness or a specific medical condition that is short-lived and is, therefore, quickly remedied by appropriate treatment of the condition and a disappearance of symptoms.

The various causes of transient incontinence include some medications, urinary tract infections, and sometimes pregnancy, when, as the fetus grows larger and larger, it begins pressing on the bladder.

The good news about transient incontinence is, again, that it is temporary. When your cold is better, or when your urinary tract infection goes away, the urine leakage stops.

If you think your medication may be causing transient urinary incontinence, talk to your doctor about the possibility of switching to a different drug.

What Else You Should Know About Urinary Incontinence

Incontinence. Incontinence is the loss of voluntary control of bowel movements or urination. It is a symptom or a condition, rather than a disease, and can be caused by a variety of different processes, including damage to the sphincter muscles, anal surgery, certain medications, systemic diseases, chemotherapy, or conditions that affect the functioning of the nervous system.

Understanding the Causes of Urinary Incontinence. Urinary incontinence is a common problem, so you shouldn't be ashamed if you experience it. It can be a temporary condition, as in the case of transient urinary incontinence, or a permanent condition.

Which one it is depends upon the underlying cause.

What Type Of Doctors Diagnose And Treat Urinary Incontinence? Several types of doctors can diagnose and provide treatment for urinary incontinence, including urologists, urogynecologists, OB/GYNs, family care physicians, and internal medicine practitioners.

Urinary incontinence is a common problem for men and women over the age of 65. According to the National Institute on Aging, at least one in 10 adults over 65 have a problem with urinary incontinence, also known as an overactive bladder.


Urinary Incontinence In Women. NIDDK / NIH. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/uiwomen/. Accessed 04/22/10.

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