Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) can have a bigger impact on women’s lives than we know. It’s an embarrassing problem, but a common one with more than 1 in 3 women experiencing some sort of incontinence by age 60. Often, it isn’t discussed how much it can affect the day-to-day lives of women who experience leaks, let alone the emotional or financial toll it can take on a woman and her family. Between the purchases of hygienic products to help cover leaks to doctor visits, the cost of SUI can add up more quickly than you realize. 

Missed Opportunities

Missed Opportunities

There may be a lot of “what ifs” for women with stress incontinence. Often times having to deal with leaks can lead women to just sit out on an experience or opportunity because the cleanup or chance of embarrassment is too great. These “what ifs” could be anything – the chance to take that prospective client out for dinner that could turn into a bonus, or missing out on a 5K race that you were going to run with your son, the list could go on. Missing out on experiences and opportunities because of SUI can have a larger, more quantitative effect on finances than women may be aware of. 

Pads and Liners

Some women turn to disposable options to help absorb and mask the occasional leaks they experience when they laugh or sneeze. These options like incontinence liners or pads that can be found in the aisles with sanitary napkins, can be pricey for a one-time use item. Some of these products can range from $7.99 to around $35 depending on the type of material, brand, and quantity that comes in the pack. It is recommended to change these types of incontinence products several times a day to prevent odor or skin irritation and infections. This can add up quickly, easily costing anywhere from $16 to $70 a month for two packs of incontinence underwear or pads. 

Laundry

Laundry

Another financial impact of SUI is on a household’s laundry. With SUI, a leak is bound to happen and get on undergarments and even clothes. Clearly, these items of clothing need to be washed but that adds to the approximately $600 we spend on doing laundry (in our own homes, not laundromats) every year. Contributing more loads means more money spent on clean clothes just because of stress incontinence leaks. Simply purchasing new clothes to replace the soiled ones is an option, but pricey and wasteful. 

Surgery

Surgery

One option that may be considered for women living with SUI is surgery. There are two kinds of surgery that can be performed for women that are experiencing leaks: 

 

Mid-urethral sling surgery: A thin strip of mesh is used to make the sling, and is surgically placed under the urethra by one of three methods of making incisions and attaching the sling. 

Traditional sling surgery: A strip of tissue from the stomach or thigh (or from a donor)  is taken to make the sling. With two incisions in the vagina and abdomen, the sling will go through the cut in the stomach and is stitched inside the stomach wall.

 

While these procedures have become common and have helped women stop leaks, there is a financial aspect to consider. The procedure could cost anywhere from $13,000 and up, depending on health coverage and type of mesh procedure that is performed. Getting surgery also entails plenty of follow-up costs and doctor appointments that could impact a family’s financials even further. Prescriptions for managing pain after surgery, ensuring that incisions don’t get infected with ointments, and meeting with a healthcare professional after surgery to make sure everything is okay can all be costly. This is all assuming that the surgery and recovery go well, the financial impact could worsen if there are complications that lead to more medical costs. 

Revive™

Revive is an affordable, reusable product for women experiencing leaks with SUI. The revolutionary device is available without a prescription at local retailers for $34.99 and can be used for one month. Revive is one size and can be comfortably worn for 12 hours for leak protection all day. With just one purchase, women can have safe leak prevention instead of leak coverage saving clothes and undergarments and embarrassment.