Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI). Morgan Lowe answers your FAQs...

Morgan Lowe, Women's Health Physiotherapist
Claremont Clinics: Wednesday Afternoons

What is Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI)?
‘Stress Incontinence’ or ‘SUI’ means that the bladder leaks urine when put under sudden physical pressure. Eg. when coughing, sneezing, laughing, running, jumping, during sex or when bending and lifting.
How do I know if I have SUI?
When you leak urine involuntarily, whether loss of only drops or more, this is SUI. If it is mild incontinence, you will have light leakage during rigorous activity such as playing sports or exercising, or when you sneeze, laugh, cough, or lift something. If it is moderate or more severe incontinence, you will leak urine even with low impact movement such as standing up, walking, or bending over.
How common is SUI?
Urinary leakage is a common medical condition occurring in about one out of every three women at some time in their lives.
What causes SUI?
SUI is more common among older women, but is not caused simply by aging. It occurs in younger, active, healthy women as well. Weak pelvic floor muscles (the internal sling of muscles and ligaments that sits inside the base of the pelvis) are one of the main causes of this type of leakage. Several factors can contribute to a weakness in the pelvic floor muscles; pregnancy and childbirth, a chronic cough, obesity, chronic constipation, a heavy job requiring lots of lifting, active hobbies that require a lot of jumping, a history of pelvic surgery. However it is often a combination of several different factors that will lead to a weakness in the muscles.
Does it matter if I have SUI?
To know if SUI is a problem for you, ask yourself: Is SUI limiting my daily activities? Have I stopped playing sports? Have I changed my lifestyle in any way because I’m afraid of urine leakage? Have I become uncomfortable with myself and my body? Am I avoiding sex because I am worried that I may leak urine and be embarrassed? If any of your answers are yes, do not worry as there are many options to treat SUI.
Should I think about surgery to 'fix' my SUI?
Before going ahead, you should have a clear diagnosis of SUI from an incontinence specialist during a physical examination. Additionally, you should only consider surgery if the SUI significantly bothers you or affects your daily activities. Surgery is also not easily reversible, and depending on the type of surgery, is not always a long-lasting solution. There are many nonsurgical options that you can try first.
How can I get help?
Women’s Health Physiotherapists are specially trained to assess and treat your SUI symptoms in a discrete and compassionate way. Through efficient training of your pelvic floor muscles along with other treatments and lifestyle advice, you can learn to effectively conquer your symptoms! Research has shown that over 75% of women are able to significantly reduce or eliminate urinary leakage with through Physiotherapy. If you're worried, Morgan will be happy to see you at Claremont.
Do I need a GP/Consultant referral, how do I book an appointment?
You can self-refer for gynaecology and obstetric physiotherapy. Morgan Lowe holds her clinics every Wednesday afternoon. An initial one hour consultation with Morgan at Claremont is £70, follow-up 30 minute appointments are £50. For more information or to book an appointment with Morgan, just call our Private Patient Team on 0114 263 2114 or email

Copyright Morgan West 2017.


Date: 02/06/2017
By: Paula Lee
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