Male Urinary Incontinence Treatment

Make an Appointment


Male urinary incontinence can disrupt your whole life. It's common for men to lose control of their bladder and leak urine. But it's not normal and you should seek treatment.  

At UVA Health, you'll find urology experts who can treat the underlying cause.

Treating Male Urinary Incontinence at UVA Health

Treatment has come a long way. Urology experts will tailor treatment based on the underlying reason why you're leaking urine. Treatment may include: 

Nerve Stimulation

Devices like Urgent PC and Inter-Stim can stimulate the nerves that control your bladder. Your doctor implants a thin lead wire with a small electrode tip. Therapy can be done as a series of treatments in your doctor's office.


Our experts also have extensive experience with surgery. This may be done to relieve a physical blockage due to an enlarged prostate.

Other procedures involve surgical repair or implants into the bladder sphincter. The sphincter is the gate that allows the urine to flow through.

Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral therapy includes:

  • Making muscles stronger by doing Kegel exercises, which strengthen the muscles that hold the bladder in place and control urine flow
  • Painless electrical stimulation can strengthen the muscles more quickly; helpful for stress incontinence
  • Creating a regular schedule to empty your bladder (called bladder training). This may also involve drinking fewer liquids


When treating male urinary incontinence, Your doctor may prescribe anticholinergics to relax the bladder muscles and treat urge incontinence. 

Devices for Incontinence

Depending on the severity of your condition, your options may include:

  • Absorbent diapers 
  • Catheters; external (condom) or internal (Foley) catheters
  • Penile clamp, which is padded and has a sleeve to absorb leakage

Home Care

These things you can do at home can help:

  • Take care of your skin by gently cleaning yourself after an episode of incontinence. Let the skin air dry.
  • Make it easier to get to the bathroom. For example, rearrange furniture and remove throw rugs. Add night-lights in the hallway and in the bathroom.
  • If necessary, keep a bedpan or urine canister handy in your bedroom.

Types of Urinary Incontinence

At UVA Health, we have treatments for all types of urinary incontinence.

Stress Incontinence

Leakage may be caused by:

  • Weak muscles that suspend the bladder
  • Weak muscles that control urine flow
  • Damage to the muscles that control urine flow following prostate surgery
  • Obesity

Urge Incontinence (Overactive Bladder)

The causes of overactive bladder include:

Overflow Incontinence

Overflow incontinence occurs when the bladder will not empty, which causes urine to build up and overflow. This leads to leaking of urine. It may be caused by:

  • Prostate enlargement
  • Bladder that is blocked, such as by a scar in the urethra (stricture)
  • Fecal impaction putting pressure on the urethra
  • Drugs (such as antidepressants, hypnotics, antipsychotics, beta-blockers, antihistamines and calcium channel blockers)
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Weak bladder muscles
  • Nerve damage

Functional Incontinence

Functional incontinence occurs when you have normal bladder control, but you're unable to reach the toilet in time. It may be a result of a condition like severe arthritis. Drugs that cause confusion or sedation can also lead to functional incontinence.

Learn more about why we're ranked among the nation's best for urology care.

fontaine 500, urology clinic

UVA Urology Clinic

At our urology clinic, we treat a full range of urologic conditions including male urinary incontinence. If you're noticing symptoms, talk with one of our providers.

Make an Appointment


Your doctor will ask about your symptoms, medical history and perform a physical exam. Your doctor may ask you to keep a diary of your urinary habits.

Tests to help find the cause of the incontinence may include:

  • Stress test — you relax and then cough as your doctor watches for loss of urine (this will confirm if you have stress incontinence)
  • Urine tests
  • Prostate exam
  • Blood tests
  • Ultrasound 
  • Cystoscopy

Are You at Risk?

Your risk of incontinence increases with these factors:

  • Age: older than 65
  • History of prostate surgery
  • Prostate enlargement due to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), infection or prostate cancer
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Obesity
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Urethritis
  • Depression
  • Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Spinal cord injury or disease
  • Taking certain substances or medicines:
    • Caffeine
    • Alcohol
    • Beta-blockers
    • Alpha-agonists
    • Cholinergic agents
    • Cyclophosphamide