Urodynamics measures the interaction between the bladder and the urethra, the organs that compose the lower urinary system. The bladder is a hollow organ with a smooth muscular wall that expands and contracts. The urine is received from your kidneys and stored in the bladder. The bladder expands without abnormal rises in pressure. During urination, the bladder contracts causing urine to leave the bladder and exit the body through the urethra. A sphincter muscle is in the upper portion of the urethra, right below the bladder. The sphincter muscle remains tightened as long as the bladder is not ready to empty. Thus, when you cough, sneeze or jump, the tightened sphincter will not allow the flow of urine out of the bladder. When you are ready to urinate, the sphincter relaxes during the contraction of the bladder to allow the unobstructed flow of urine from the bladder through the urethra and out of the body. Urinary difficulty or incontinence results from a functional disorder in the lower urinary tract. As a result, doctors will often order an urodynamics test to assess the function of a patient's lower urinary tract. The test usually takes about one hour and is conducted in the doctor's office or hospital without anesthesia. Normally, there is no restriction in diet before the test, and patients will often be asked to arrive with a full bladder.
The Department of Urogynecology provides surgical correction of the pelvic floor to treat issues of pelvic prolapse. Pelvic prolapse can manifest in the form of a “bulge” from the vagina. This “bulge” may be a cystocele, rectocele, enterocele or prolapse of the uterus. In most cases, this can be repaired vaginally through a variety of procedures to restore the normal anatomy. Often a laparoscopic approach can be performed to achieve restoration of the normal anatomy. This involves the suspension of the pelvic organs and various pelvic ligaments.