The New Jersey Continence Center
Expert Care for A Sensitive Problem
Continence Center Glossary
Cystocele - descent of the bladder through a weakness in supporting tissues.
Cystoscopy - a test in which a tiny fiberoptic instrument is inserted to directly visualize the urethra, bladder neck, and bladder in the female and the urethra, prostate, and bladder in the male. This test helps assess bladder neck obstruction, bladder neck hypermobility, and other problems.
Functional incontinence - if a person suffers from a physical illness or injury, or a mental disability that prevents him or her from using the toilet properly, he or she is considered functionally incontinent. Patients with this disorder have healthy urinary tracts.
Kegel exercise - also known as pelvic floor muscle exercise, this non-invasive form of controlling incontinence utilizes exercise to strengthen the muscles that allow you to stop urinating voluntarily (the pubococcygeus and perineal muscles) to help build strength in the area, and consequently increase bladder control.
Magnet therapy - revolutionary therapy that uses magnetic fields to contract the muscles of the pelvic floor. The painless procedure strengthens the muscles to aid in bladder control. During the therapy, patients sit in a special chair that aims the magnetic energy at their pelvic muscles.
Mixed incontinence - patients with mixed incontinence suffer from more than one type of incontinence.
Overflow incontinence - dripping leakage of urine that results from the bladder being filled beyond capacity. The condition often occurs in men with enlarged prostate glands, and women with prolapse, or scar tissue that narrows the ureter and hinders the flow of urine out of the body.
Pelvic prolapse - a condition that is common in women, whereby one or more of the pelvic organs (urethra, bladder, rectum, small intestine, uterus and vagina) falls through the "potential space" of the vagina, as a result of weakened supporting structures of the pelvis.
Pelvic floor muscles - Two sets of muscles, the pubococcygeus and perineal muscles, that allow a person to control their urine voluntarily.
Pelvic floor muscle exercises - also known as Kegel exercise, this non-invasive form of controlling incontinence utilizes exercise to strengthen the muscles that allow you to stop urinating voluntarily (the pubococcygeus and perineal muscles) to help build strength in the area, and consequently increase bladder control.
Pubococcygeus muscle - a muscle present in men and women that acts like a sling to support the bladder. If this muscle is weak, it can contribute to urinary incontinence.
Rectocele - ascent of the rectum through a weakness in its supporting tissue.
Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) - an involuntary spurt-like loss of urine due to a sudden increase in abdominal pressure, caused by sneezing, coughing and other activities.
Sub-urethral sling - a surgical procedure that cures stress urinary incontinence. By placing a sling of support tissue under the urethra, and anchoring it to each side of the pubic bone, it acts as a "hammock" to support the bladder neck and urethra.
Ureters - two tubes that connect the kidney to the bladder. After the kidneys make urine, it passes through the ureters to the bladder.
Urge incontinence - as the name suggests, people with urge incontinence suffer from the uncontrollable urge to urinate, even when the bladder is relatively empty. This condition is common in older people, and it results from an overactive bladder that sometimes contracts unexpectedly.
Urine - water-based substance made by the kidneys to remove waste from the body. The kidneys filter this waste from the blood, and deliver the urine through the ureters to the bladder.
Video-urodynamics - a study whereby simultaneous measurements of bladder and abdominal pressures, urinary flow rates, pelvic floor muscle activity and fluoroscopy (dynamic x-ray imaging) of the bladder and urethra during the filling and emptying phases of urination are obtained and recorded on a computer.