Brain damage can occur during foetal development or acquired after birth. 

Common causes of an acquired brain injury are: 

  • Accident and trauma
  • Stroke
  • Tumours
  • Infections
  • Poisoning and toxins
  • Hypoxia
  • Degenerative neurological disease.  For example, in Huntington’s Disease the Injury to the brain affects decision making and mobility so deciding when to go to the toilet as well as locating the toilet can be an issue.
  • Congenital Anomalies of the urinary system 

Several uncommon but important disorders affect the normal anatomy or function of the bladder, which can lead to urinary incontinence. 

  • For example, a spinal cord defect such as spina bifida can cause abnormal nerve function to the bladder and lead to incontinence. Some infants have a birth defect that prevents the bladder or urethra from developing completely, leading to nearly constant urine loss (total incontinence).
  • Another type of birth defect causes the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder (ureters) to end in an abnormal location in the bladder or even outside the bladder (such as in the vagina or urethra or on the surface of the body), causing incontinence.

Some children have an overactive bladder that easily spasms or contracts, causing incontinence, whereas others may have difficulty emptying their bladder.

acquired brain injury