Excuse me, your pants are dripping.
January 16, 2015 2:09 AM   Subscribe

I am experiencing urinary incontinence. [Gross stuff inside]

I had my period. It was unremarkable, except that it ended about a week ago, and as soon as it ended, I started experiencing incontinence along with an odor I have literally never smelled before. I thought it was vaginal at first, because there was a brownish red discharge along with it (like... blood) but when I went to the gyno, he said I didn't have anything wrong vaginally, so it must be urinary. The only thing I can think of is a UTI, but I've had one before and it was nothing like this. I'm not experiencing any itching or burning, and when I had a UTI I wasn't incontinent, I just had to go to the bathroom every 3 seconds, whereas now, it comes out whenever (but especially if I cough or laugh. Or... am lying down.) I went to have my urine analyzed, but there was something wrong with the sample so I have to go back, which I will, but in the meantime I'm really starting to freak out. I think it's getting worse. Has anyone experienced the sudden onset of incontinence? What happened? Was it a serious infection? Did it turn out to be something even more serious than an infection? Did it become permanent?
posted by Enchanting Grasshopper to Health & Fitness (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I've had three UTIs in my life and they were all different to each other, so I wouldn't discount UTI as a potential diagnosis based on the symptoms being different.

If blood is involved, you really need to get treated as soon as possible. Are you able (and insured?) to go somewhere now?

In the meantime, drink a lot of water. Some people recommend cranberry capsules but I think they are better for prevention rather than cure. You could take some anyway if you have any around. Probiotics might be helpful if your bacterial eco system is out of whack.

The presence of a bad smell makes me think of an infection as the most likely cause, rather than something else that could cause incontinence. It's your body trying to get rid of the infection.

This sounds horrible. Sorry it's happening. I hope you get it sorted out soon.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 2:35 AM on January 16, 2015 [2 favorites]

UTIs are the story of my life unfortunately and this sounds identical to some of the bouts I used to get. Don't freak out -- up your water intake CONSIDERABLY and if you have a few days before you have to go back to give a sample you could ask your doctor to give you permission to use something like Uristat which will help calm your bladder enough so that the frequent urge to pee is numbed for a bit. It could also help with the incontinence since it sounds like your sphincter is all out of whack. You'll have to make sure you don't take it within 24-36 hrs of giving a sample though.

Wearing soft pads in your undies may be the easiest solution, too. Good luck! I feel for you so, so much.
posted by Hermione Granger at 3:00 AM on January 16, 2015 [2 favorites]

Could you be passing a kidney stone? While I was passing one my urine was dark and I constantly felt the urge to pee and when I went to the bathroom I would just dribble. When I went to Urologist the CT scan showed a stone in my left kidney but I think I was passing a stone during this time that did not show up on C.T. Scan. It took two months and I finally passed a stone and all my symptoms went away. (I did drink 3 tbsp of "RAW apple cider vinegar with the mother" mixed with water for three days and then the stone came out!)
posted by just asking at 3:49 AM on January 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

For some people, wearing a menstrual cup makes it harder to pee. The rim of the cup puts pressure on the urethra in some cases. If you're up for it, you might be able to use this to your advantage to help you deal with the symptoms of whatever is up now.
Not a cure, and it may not help you, but on the other hand, it may. It worked for me when I had a temporary and light case of incontinence.
posted by Too-Ticky at 5:34 AM on January 16, 2015

I had temporary bladder issues when I started drinking green tea. Have you changed your diet in any way recently?
posted by raisingsand at 8:33 AM on January 16, 2015

Response by poster: If blood is involved, you really need to get treated as soon as possible.

Honestly, I don't even know if the reddish brown discharge is blood, I just assumed it was from my period at first, but now I have no idea (am not sure which...orifice it's coming from).

I'm feeling slightly less freaked out now. I gave another sample today, so I really hope it's sorted out in the next few days. Thanks for the responses.
posted by Enchanting Grasshopper at 11:31 AM on January 16, 2015 [2 favorites]

Maybe less useful now that you've already given a sample, but you can get test strips from Amazon that will test for both UTI and blood in the urine. I've found them accurate for both, and helpful to get ahead of an infection when I can't get a quick appointment. (My doctor will call in a prescription for a UTI, since I've had them fairly frequently in the past.)
posted by instamatic at 4:09 AM on January 17, 2015 [1 favorite]

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