Before developing a treatment plan, Mayo Clinic specialists take a detailed medical history and do a thorough physical examination to determine the type, severity and duration of urinary incontinence. To make a diagnosis, your doctor may order one or more of the following tests:
- Blood tests
- Urinalysis or urine culture to rule out urinary tract infection or other abnormalities
- Pad test. After placement of a pre-weighed sanitary pad, the patient is asked to exercise. Following exercise, the pad is re-weighed to determine the amount of urine loss.
- Cystoscopy (inspection of the inside of the bladder)
- Urodynamic studies, to measure pressure and urine flow
Mayo Clinic specialists may recommend additional tests if:
- The diagnosis is still unclear
- An adequate trial of therapy is ineffective
- Surgery is a treatment option
- Blood is present in the urine, without sign of infection
- Other conditions exist, such as urinary tract infection, persistent difficulty emptying or starting to empty the bladder, previous surgery or radical pelvic surgery, presence of pelvic relaxation or neurological problems
Additional tests may include a pelvic or abdominal ultrasound, X-rays of the kidneys and bladder, or an electromyogram (EMG) to examine muscle activity in the urethra or pelvic floor.
Read more about Cystoscopy, Electromyogram and Incontinence diagnosis at MayoClinic.com.