Urinary incontinence historical perspective

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Nasrin Nikravangolsefid, MD-MPH [2]


urinary incontinence was first described by ancient Egyptians in 1500 BC that resulted from spinal cord injury. Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) described the internal sphincter at the neck of the bladder in his drawings. In 1564, several portable urinals was developed by Ambros Pare to treat urinary incontinence in males. In the 1600s, the condom catheter with pig bladder was first designed by Wilhem Hildanus. In 1747, a perineal bulbar urethral compression belt was first innovated by Lorenz Heister. In 1988, Botulinum toxin A [Botox] was introduced for detrusor sphincter disorder secondary to spinal cord injury. In 1929, the modern urethral catheter was first developed by Frederic Foley to control postoperative bleeding after suprapubic prostatectomies.

Historical Perspective

Landmark Events in the Development of Treatment Strategies

Development of Treatment Strategies


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Chong JT, Simma-Chiang V (2018). "A historical perspective and evolution of the treatment of male urinary incontinence". Neurourol Urodyn. 37 (3): 1169–1175. doi:10.1002/nau.23429. PMID 29053886.
  2. Schultheiss D, Grünewald V, Jonas U (1999). "Urodynamics in the anatomical work of Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)". World J Urol. 17 (3): 137–43. doi:10.1007/s003450050121. PMID 10418086.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Schultheiss D, Höfner K, Oelke M, Grünewald V, Jonas U (2000). "Historical aspects of the treatment of urinary incontinence". Eur Urol. 38 (3): 352–62. doi:10.1159/000020306. PMID 10940713.
  4. "Incontinence of Urine Treated by the Local Application of Carbonic Acid Gas with Chloroform".
  5. Heer H (1977). "[Treatment of Urinary incontinence by Teflon injection (author's transl)]". Urol Int. 32 (4): 295–302. doi:10.1159/000280145. PMID 929773.
  6. Jordan O, Doelker E, Defabiani N, Caviezel A, Iselin C (2004). "Novel injectable urethral bulking agents for the treatment of urinary incontinence". J Mater Sci Mater Med. 15 (4): 519–22. doi:10.1023/b:jmsm.0000021131.15283.18. PMID 15332628.
  7. Yamamoto T, Gotoh M, Kato M, Majima T, Toriyama K, Kamei Y; et al. (2012). "Periurethral injection of autologous adipose-derived regenerative cells for the treatment of male stress urinary incontinence: Report of three initial cases". Int J Urol. 19 (7): 652–9. doi:10.1111/j.1442-2042.2012.02999.x. PMID 22435469.
  8. Thornton AJ, Alsberg E, Hill EE, Mooney DJ (2004). "Shape retaining injectable hydrogels for minimally invasive bulking". J Urol. 172 (2): 763–8. doi:10.1097/01.ju.0000130466.84214.f7. PMID 15247778.
  9. Dykstra DD, Sidi AA, Scott AB, Pagel JM, Goldish GD (1988). "Effects of botulinum A toxin on detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia in spinal cord injury patients". J Urol. 139 (5): 919–22. doi:10.1016/s0022-5347(17)42717-0. PMID 3361663.
  10. Linsenmeyer TA (2013). "Use of botulinum toxin in individuals with neurogenic detrusor overactivity: state of the art review". J Spinal Cord Med. 36 (5): 402–19. doi:10.1179/2045772313Y.0000000116. PMC 3739890. PMID 23941788.