Female Urinary Incontinence Device

Women suffering from urinary incontinence may employ various mechanical devices that insert directly into their vagina or urethra to either plug it or occlude it, with new products regularly entering the market and then quickly being abandoned after being enthusiastically supported by manufacturers.

As part of a trial comparing intravaginal tampons and mechanical devices currently available to women with stress or mixed urinary incontinence, an intravaginal tampon could be evaluated against them.


Mechanical devices remain controversial in their role in managing female urinary incontinence. Few controlled trials exist to demonstrate whether mechanical devices are superior to no treatment at all, and more research needs to be conducted into whether one device outshines another; there’s also no definitive proof associating any device over another or when compared with behavioral therapy; yet any definitive answers have not been reached yet.

Mechanical devices have a long and distinguished history dating back to Egypt. Periodically new ones enter the market, are enthusiastically promoted by manufacturers, and then quickly disappear within months or years. It appears as though many women prefer removable plastic devices rather than permanent implants as an option for women’s implants.

Female urinary incontinence devices come in two varieties: catheter systems that cover the vulva and drainage bags. A catheter system consists of a flexible tube that connects your pubic bone to your buttocks, leading to a urine collection bag and draining urine when you sit or lie down, then collecting and disposing of it when you void. Both types can be worn under your brief or pantyliner for ease of use; drainage bags collect urine when voiding occurs for disposal at once.

Another external female urinary incontinence device available to women diverts their urine using a vacuum system, similar to how male external urinary drainage systems work. The Uro-Vaginal Diversion Device (EUDFA) features a cylindrical piece of thermoplastic elastomer secured with string in the vagina, pulled over the urethra and bladder neck pressure points until involuntary voiding is prevented – these can last for up to 16 hours before needing to be taken off and discarded.

This device is an incredible innovation in female urinary incontinence treatment and makes healthcare providers’ lives simpler by being easily installed and removed for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, and home care settings. Easy to clean and odor free, it protects skin from direct urine contact compared to traditional treatment modalities for female incontinence – perfect for bedridden women looking for discreet solutions to managing their incontinence. It may also prove especially useful as an incontinence management strategy in situations such as bed racing.


Incontinence among women is a widespread condition that negatively impacts the quality of life and independence, leading to social isolation, psychological distress, and increased healthcare costs for both patients and healthcare systems.

Mechanical incontinence devices such as urethral plugs or external meatal diaphragms may help women who experience urinary leakage. These devices act as barriers against urine leakage from their bladder, decreasing frequency of incontinence episodes and protecting skin injuries; however, not every patient will find these devices comfortable; some may cause pain or discomfort when used.

Female external catheters offer another solution for women without access to mechanical incontinence devices: non-invasive urinary incontinence collection devices that work like external catheters but without inserting catheters into the urethra; less painful than an intraurethral catheter insertion and known to reduce risks of urinary tract infections.

Condom catheters are an increasingly popular form of female external catheter. Resembling a condom in shape and function, these devices connect from the penis to a collection bag secured around one leg. Although these catheters may help those suffering from urinary incontinence to return to daily activities faster, not all users find these suitable and there may be other more discreet, comfortable or easier-to-use options that may better meet their needs.

Bard PureWick catheter is an easy and straightforward female external catheter solution for patients and caregivers, offering intuitive use. It can be worn while sitting or lying down and features a contoured design for secure placement – even while asleep! Furthermore, its design makes cleaning simple; no barrier cream or similar solution are necessary to prevent urine flow through it.

PureWick catheter use has proven successful for three patients in terms of decreasing both frequency and time between episodes, and skin injuries and infections associated with urinary incontinence. Though its effects in these instances were limited, they provide evidence that PureWick is a viable option to an indwelling urinary catheter to manage urinary incontinence among female patients.


There are various mechanical devices designed to prevent urine leakage. These include urethral inserts (similar to tampons), pessaries (flexible silicone rings that you insert into your vagina and wear all day long), and transvaginal mesh tape, among others. Both serve to stop urinary loss by applying pressure on tissues in your bladder. Both types can help control stress or urge incontinence as well as intrinsic sphincter deficiency which makes the bladder too sensitive.

One of the most effective female urinary incontinence devices is a sheath system, which uses external pressure to keep the bladder base closed. Used alongside pelvic floor muscle training programs, sheath systems have proven particularly successful at treating stress incontinence caused by sudden increases in intra-abdominal pressure; additionally, they may help those who have an interfering fibrotic urethra retain urinary control more effectively than otherwise.

Another type of mechanical device used to treat stress incontinence is a urethral insert, similar to a tampon and worn while engaging in activities that trigger urinary incontinence – such as aerobics or laughing. Also referred to as urodynamic sphincter diaphragms, these devices work by applying pressure against bladder tissues in order to decrease urinary leakage. A small trial comparing two such inserts found that those who received New Expandable Tip (NEAT) device experienced significantly fewer episodes than those who received Reliance device (Robinson 2003). Women using NEAT devices saw greater reduction than those receiving Reliance device (Robinson 2003).

Although these devices can be beneficial, there is not much evidence from trials showing they are superior to other treatments, like pelvic floor muscle training. Large, well-conducted trials must be conducted to establish their role. A recent Cochrane review concluded they can be useful but evidence supporting them was weak.


Pessaries are medical devices designed to mechanically support your pelvic organs if you suffer from prolapse, as well as providing some women with relief from stress urinary incontinence (leakage when coughing or sneezing). Their shapes and sizes vary to meet specific needs while still being comfortable; made from medical grade silicone material which resists absorbtion of vaginal secretions and odors.

Pelvic physiotherapists can fit you with a pessary. First they will conduct a comprehensive assessment of your pelvic floor function in order to ascertain if this treatment option is the most suitable option for you. If recommended, they can guide you through finding and selecting an ideal pessary, explaining its function, caring for it properly and scheduling another physiotherapy appointment 1-2 weeks post initial fitting to make sure its sizing is correct as well as practicing inserting/removing and cleaning procedures so as to reduce complications such as infection/ulcers/vaginal erosion of vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls/vaginal walls etc.

Pessary devices are firm rings inserted into the lower urinary tract to help prevent leakage caused by muscle spasms or increased abdominal pressure, providing extra layer of bladder neck support that may reduce or even eliminate leakage. They work best when your pelvic floor muscles are strong; however, even strong muscles may still be stretched and compressed by movement such as walking or jogging, coughing or sneezing increases pressure in this region of your body and cause leakage of urine.

Pessary devices offer an ideal and cost-effective treatment option, making them more comfortable than bladder management techniques like catheters or incontinence pads. Their ring-like shape makes insertion and removal simple; you may even be able to have sexual relations while wearing one; for optimal hygiene reasons however it would be best to remove prior to engaging in sexual activity. While occasional white discharge from wearing a pessary may occur as normal; if this changes colour or smells unpleasant seek medical advice immediately.


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