Symptoms of Urinary Incontinence

Symptoms of Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is any leaking from the bladder that can't be controlled. The amount that is leaked differs between people. It can range from dribbling to a full clearing of the bladder.

Other symptoms differ based on the type of incontinence. They may be one or more of following:

  • Leaking caused by laughing, sneezing, lifting heavy objects, or exercise
  • A strong urge pass urine followed by loss of urine
  • Can't hold urine long enough to make it to a bathroom
  • A hard time starting to pass urine
  • Straining to empty the bladder
  • Reduced stream or dribbling
  • Feeling like the bladder isn’t fully emptied out
  • Pain when passing urine

If you have any of these, call your doctor. These are often a symptom of other health problems.



Symptoms & causes of bladder control problems (urinary incontinence). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: Updated June 2018. Accessed January 17, 2019.
Urinary incontinence. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at: Updated February 2016. Accessed January 17, 2019.
Urinary incontinence in adults. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: Updated July 2018. Accessed January 17, 2019.
Urinary incontinence in men. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.... Accessed December 4, 2018. Accessed January 17, 2019.
Urinary incontinence in women. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.... Accessed November 14, 2018. Accessed January 17, 2019.
Last reviewed December 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Adrienne Carmack, MD
Last Updated: 1/17/2019

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This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

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