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Patients with functional incontinence have mental or physical disabilities that keep them from urinating normally, although the urinary system itself is intact. Conditions that can lead to functional incontinence include:
- Parkinson's disease
- Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. Mental confusion may prevent both recognition of the need to void and locating a bathroom.
- Severe depression. In such cases, people may become incontinent because they have difficulty with self-control.
Review Date: 07/26/2010
Reviewed By: Harvey Simon, MD, Editor-in-Chief, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Physician, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.