Provider Focus

JohannesHD2016SmallTonya Johannes, ARNP-BC

Tonya Johannes, ARNP-BC, is a Family Nurse Practitioner at MHP who treats patients of all ages and has a special interest in skin care. 

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You more than likely know the difference between a viral and bacterial infection; one is caused by a virus and the other by bacteria of course, right?

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Urinary Incontinence

Mahaska Health Partnership OB/GYN Educates on Urinary Incontinence

In his medical practice, Mahaska Health Partnership OB/GYN Specialist Dr. Jeffrey Fowler educates women on urinary incontinence.

“Adult women often suffer from symptoms of urinary incontinence which may happen without warning and can become worse as they become older,” Dr. Fowler said.

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, urinary incontinence, also known as loss of bladder control, is when urine leaks out before you can get to the bathroom.

“Millions of women lose a few drops of urine when they laugh or cough,” Dr. Fowler explained. “Others may feel a sudden urge to urinate and can’t control it. This is caused by problems with the muscles and nerves that help hold or pass urine.”

Urinary incontinence is more common in women and is often caused by pregnancy, childbirth and menopause. “When a woman is pregnant, the baby puts a great deal of pressure on the bladder and pelvic floor muscles,” Dr. Fowler described. “Childbirth can further weaken the muscles of the pelvis making it harder for women to control leaking of urine.”

There are many types of urinary incontinence, including stress incontinence which causes loss of urine with pressure such as when you cough, sneeze or during exercise. Urge incontinence is the sudden, intense urge to urinate while overflow incontinence results in frequent dribbles and an inability to empty your bladder.

Dr. Fowler says that regardless of the type of incontinence a person suffers from, there are treatments available. Urinary incontinence is not a disease but a symptom which can often be treated by modifying your behavior.

“After more serious medical conditions are ruled out, urinary incontinence can be treated through bladder training, fluid and diet management, physical therapy, medication and other interventions. In some cases, surgical procedures are needed to correct certain incontinence conditions,” Dr. Fowler explained.

“A constant need to use the bathroom can have a big impact on the choices a person makes. A person shouldn’t miss out on every day activities with friends and family over this treatable issue.”

Dr. Fowler is an OB/GYN Specialist practicing full time on the MHP campus in Oskaloosa. For an appointment, call 641.672.3360.