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Male Incontinence Treatment

Medications Used in Male Incontinence Treatment

Medicines can affect bladder control in different ways. Some help prevent incontinence by blocking abnormal nerve signals that make the bladder contract at the wrong time, while others slow the production of urine. Others relax the bladder or shrink the prostate.
Before prescribing a medicine to treat incontinence, your healthcare provider may consider changing a prescription you already take. For example, diuretics are often prescribed to treat high blood pressure because they reduce fluid in the body by increasing urine production. Thus, some men may find that switching from a diuretic to another kind of blood pressure medicine takes care of their incontinence.
If changing medicines is not an option, your healthcare provider may recommend one of the following drugs:
  • Alpha-blockers: Terazosin (Hytrin®), doxazosin (Cardura®), tamsulosin (Flomax®), and alfuzosin (Uroxatral®) are used to treat problems caused by prostate enlargement and bladder outlet obstruction. They act by relaxing the smooth muscle of the prostate and bladder neck, allowing normal urine flow and preventing abnormal bladder contractions that can lead to urge incontinence.
  • 5-alpha reductase inhibitors: Finasteride (Proscar®) and dutasteride (Avodart®) work by inhibiting the production of the male hormone DHT, which is thought to be responsible for prostate enlargement. These medications typically relieve voiding problems by shrinking an enlarged prostate.
  • Imipramine: Marketed as Tofranil®, this belongs to a class of drugs called tricyclic antidepressants. It relaxes muscles and blocks nerve signals that might cause bladder spasms. Imipramine is also used to treat bedwetting in children.
  • Antispasmodics: Propantheline (Pro-Banthine®), tolterodine (Detrol LA®), and oxybutynin (Ditropan XL®) belong to a class of drugs that work by relaxing the bladder muscle, thereby relieving spasms. Their most common side effect is dry mouth, although larger doses may cause other side effects, including:
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