What is a bladder?
The bladder is the organ that stores urine produced by the kidneys. It consists of muscular structure, has the shape of a sac and can store approximately 500 cc of urine.
What is an overactive bladder?
It is a disease characterized by the fact that the bladder smooth muscles, which surround the bladder in layers, often fully contract without a known reason and create high pressure in the bladder and a sudden urge to urinate occurs.
An overactive bladder is defined as a sudden urge to urinate with or without urinary incontinence, usually increased frequency of urination, and nocturnal urination.
What are the symptoms of overactive bladder?
• Urgent need to urinate and problem of not being able to delay urination
• Involuntary leakage of urine
• Need to urinate more often than usual
• Waking up with the need to urinate at night
What is the incidence rate in the society?
10-20% of people have such complaints at various levels at some time in their lives
How is it diagnosed?
The evaluation of the patient with OAB consists of history taking, examinations and laboratory analyses. It is possible to diagnose many OAB patients only by history taking, however for a definitive diagnosis, a special test called urodynamics should be performed to demonstrate involuntary contractions in the bladder muscle.
How is it treated?
Although there are many treatment options for overactive bladder, first, treatments including lifestyle changes, pelvic floor exercises and behavioral therapies are given. In addition to these treatments, medication, bladder botox applications for patients who do not benefit from medication, surgical interventions and nerve stimulants to reduce neurotransmission and even bladder augmentation operations can be performed.
Many patients can be successfully treated with medication. Supporting behavioral therapies with medication also increases the success rates significantly. In addition, there is a treatment alternative by closed method (endoscopic) for resistant cases.
Behavioral therapy: It consists of muscle exercises for urinary continence, urge suppression techniques, changing the time of taking diuretics and guiding the patient to lose weight.
Medication: Medicines are widely used for treatment and they are the medicines with proven efficacy and safety.
Endoscopic therapy: In the presence of overactive bladder disease resistant to medication and for patients with impaired quality of life due to their complaints, botulinum toxin can be injected into the bladder. Its effect lasts for 6-8 months. Therefore, treatment may need to be repeated.
Living with OAB
Although OAB symptoms are not life-threatening, symptoms such as sudden urge to urinate or frequent urination have a negative impact on quality of life. People with OAB symptoms feel the need to identify toilet locations before leaving home and may avoid collective activities. Also, their energy level decreases and they have difficulty with performing their daily activities since they are unable to sleep due to the need to urinate at night. Sudden episodes of urination that result in urinary incontinence are embarrassing and reduce self-confidence.
There are a number of ways to control the symptoms. These symptoms should not prevent you from being happy in your relationships and participating in social, cultural and economic life in your community. If your symptoms bother you, it is important for you to consult your doctor.