The overactive bladder is a syndrome that is quite common in some patients, especially in women and in the elderly. It is characterized by a sudden appearance of the irresistible need to urinate.
The overactive bladder affects the physical, social, vitality and emotional state of the patients who suffer from it, says the urologist in Delhi.
The International Continence Society defines the overactive bladder as a syndrome consisting of urinary urgency, in which urinary incontinence may also (or may not) occur, usually with the need to urinate 8 or more times during a period 24 hours (urinary frequency) and nocturia. This syndrome should be presented in the absence of any urinary tract infection or some other pathological condition and suggests an increase in detrusor muscle activity (muscle that allows us to urinate).
What are the symptoms of overactive bladder?
There are various signs and symptoms of the overactive bladder, among which, according to the best urologist in Pitampura, the ones that occur most frequently are the following:
- Urinary urgency (distinctive symptom): It presents as the sudden and compulsive desire to urinate, a sensation which is difficult to postpone and is the hallmark of the overactive bladder.
- Urinary incontinence: It is the inability to resist the urge to urinate and therefore there is an involuntary leakage of urine. It is one of the most common symptoms and occurs most frequently in women, says the urologist in Pitampura.
- Nocturia: It is defined as the need to go to urinate many times during the night, that is, the patient may be sleeping and the need to urinate wakes him on one or several occasions throughout the night.
- Urinary frequency: It is when the patient will urinate 8 or more times in a 24-hour period.
What are the causes that can cause an overactive bladder?
The overactive bladder is primarily a neuromuscular problem, in which the detrusor muscle contracts inappropriately during bladder filling. These contractions occur frequently, regardless of the amount of urine in the bladder, explains urologist in Rohini.
The overactive bladder can be caused by both nerve injuries and injuries that do not involve nerves. A spinal cord injury can cause this syndrome.
Some neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and diabetic neuropathy can cause overactive bladder.
Increased detrusor muscle activity can occur in the absence of nerve injury. The contractions can be induced by the rapid filling of the bladder, changes in the posture of the body, walking or even coughing because these causes are not due to some nerve injury, the need to urinate can be contained for a few minutes, says the best urologist in Rohini.
There are many risk factors that can precipitate this syndrome, such as:
- High body mass index (overweight or obesity).
- Age over 75 years.
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Having had several children.
- Present urinary infections frequently.
The diagnosis of overactive bladder can be made by having some data such as patient history (parity, previous illnesses, among others), physical examination and some laboratory studies (general urine test).
Hyperactive bladder treatment
The purpose of the treatment used in patients with an overactive bladder is to reduce the symptoms they present in order to lead a better quality of life, says urologist in Delhi.
There are both treatments with medications and with various physical exercises and changes in the lifestyle and habits of the patient.
Within the treatment with medications, anticholinergic agents can be used because they reduce the ability to contract the detrusor muscle, so it is intended to reduce the number of times it is necessary to go to urinate, although this type of medication can have dry mouth and constipation.
Within the changes in the lifestyle and habits of the patient, modifications to the diet must be made, as well as establishing fixed schedules to go to urinate and perform exercises on the floor of the pelvis, suggests urologist in Pitampura.