Urinary Incontinence Specialist

Melissa Gutierrez, MD

Minimally Invasive Surgery & Obstetrics and Gynecology located in Beverly Hills, CA

When you don’t feel confident that you can make it to the bathroom on time, it can keep you from taking part in all the activities that enrich your life and presents a constant cause for concern throughout the entire day. Melissa Marie Gutierrez, MD, FACOG, practicing in Beverly Hills, California, is an exceptional OB/GYN who has extensive experience in helping women suffering from urinary incontinence. Call Beverly Hills OB/GYN today to discuss your incontinence issue, or book an appointment online.

Urinary Incontinence Q & A

What is urinary incontinence?

Urinary incontinence occurs when you are unable to hold onto urine as you normally would. This can cause a slight leakage of urine, or sometimes complete emptying of the bladder, depending on the cause and severity of your incontinence.

The two main types of urinary incontinence are:

Stress urinary incontinence

This causes leaking when the bladder is under pressure, for example, when coughing, sneezing, or laughing.

Urgency urinary incontinence

This type of incontinence is a strong and sudden urge to urinate that you can’t control.  

Some women have mixed incontinence, which means they have symptoms of both urgency and stress urinary incontinence.

What causes urinary incontinence?

There are several possible reasons why you might develop incontinence, including:

  • Urinary tract infection (UTI)
  • Diuretic medications
  • Diuretic beverages such as coffee and alcohol
  • Pelvic floor disorders
  • Long-term constipation
  • Neuromuscular problems (faulty nerve signals)
  • Bladder stones or growths

To diagnose the cause of your incontinence, Dr. Gutierrez performs a physical exam, takes a urine sample to check for infection, and carries out any appropriate urinalysis tests. She may also order diagnostic imaging tests, such as an ultrasound.

What treatments are available for urinary incontinence?

Dr. Gutierrez provides a range of interventions to help with urinary incontinence. These may include:

  • Bladder training
  • Physical therapy
  • Using bladder support devices
  • Mirabegron medication
  • Botox® injections
  • Urethral bulking
  • Vaginal restoration using laser therapy

Dr. Gutierrez may recommend surgery in certain cases. She implants a sling formed from your own tissue or synthetic materials that lifts and supports the urethra, or she performs a colposuspension, where she places stitches near the bladder neck to lift and hold the urethra in place.

Sacral neuromodulation is another option, in which Dr. Gutierrez places a wire under your skin on your lower back near the nerve that controls the bladder, and a battery operated device nearby. Electrical signals sent by the device improve bladder function.

Dr. Gutierrez might also suggest a noninvasive treatment derived from acupuncture called a percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation. This is a 30-minute weekly procedure she can carry out in-office.

Incontinence can be inconvenient and embarrassing, and many women don’t feel comfortable trying to lead a normal life when they are constantly worrying about having an accident. If incontinence is affecting your life, call Dr. Gutierrez today or book an appointment online.