Botox® Injections for Overactive Bladder
What is overactive bladder?
Overactive bladder (OAB) is a term used to describe a set of urologic symptoms that include:
- Getting up and urinating at least two times per night (nocturia)
- Inability to postpone the need to urinate (urinary urgency)
- Leakage of urine when the urge to urinate occurs (urge incontinence)
- Urinating at least eight times per day
OAB is due to a disruption of signals between the brain and the bladder that results in involuntary contraction of the bladder muscle, regardless of the volume of urine. OAB is typically the result of aging, but may also develop due to risk factors including:
- Alcohol or caffeine consumption
- Diabetic nerve damage
- Infections, such as urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Multiple pregnancies
- Nerve damage due to multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Parkinson’s disease
- Previous pelvic surgery
- Previous stroke resulting in nerve damage
- Prostate surgery
- Spinal cord injury
- Use of certain medications
How do Botox injections work?
Botox injections partially paralyze the nerves and bladder muscle in order to treat the leakage of urine (incontinence) in adults with OAB and the strong need to urinate with leakage or wetting accidents.
The injections––which may be performed as infrequently as twice a year––are made directly into multiple areas of the muscle using a cytoscope (a thin, lighted tube with a camera that is inserted into the bladder through the urethra). The procedure typically takes approximately half an hour, and can be done in the comfort of a physician’s office.
Who is a candidate for this procedure?
Botox may relieve symptoms of OAB in adults who continue to experience an urgent and frequent need to urinate or incontinence after taking other medications to manage the condition, as well as those who cannot tolerate the side effects of other medications.
How long will the results last?
The effects of Botox treatment can last up to six months before wearing off.
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