Urinary incontinence is the inability to control urination. It may be temporary or permanent, and can result from a variety of problems in the urinary tract. About 20 million American women and 6 million men have urinary incontinence or have experienced it at some time in their lives. Incontinence is usually found in older people. Because incontinence is a symptom, rather than a disease, it is often hard to determine the cause.