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Bowel and Bladder Problems

Cancer and cancer treatment may cause bowel or bladder changes or problems such as diarrhea, constipation, incontinence, or retention.  Learn why they might happen and what to expect if they do.


Constipation is the infrequent or difficult passage of hard stool, which often causes pain and discomfort. It's important to know why constipation might happen and how it can be managed. 


Diarrhea is loose, watery bowel movements that might happen several times a day with or without discomfort.  Since diarrhea can have many causes, there can be different ways to manage it.

Bladder and Bowel Incontinence

Leaking or being unable to control urine or stool is called incontinence.  It might happen to some people who have certain types of medical conditions, including cancer. Learn who might be at risk for incontinence and how to get help.

Urine Retention

Being unable to completely empty the bladder is called urinary retention.  People with certain types of tumors or who are taking certain medications or cancer treatments might have a higher risk for this. It's important to learn how urinary retention can be managed.