Is It a Bladder Infection, or Overactive Bladder?

Many patients experience irritative bladder symptoms such as

  • frequency
  • rushing to the commode
  • not making it in time
  • getting up during the night too often
  • bladder discomfort  

For many it can be difficult to tell if this represents a bladder infection, or overactive bladder, which has very similar symptoms.

Is It a Bladder Infection, or Overactive Bladder?

For many patients it requires a doctor visit with a urinalysis and culture to diagnose a urinary infection.

However many of these patients have overactive bladder which can vary in its intensity. A full evaluation by a urologist can be helpful to determine the source of this common bladder problem.

Initial evaluation

Needs a thorough review of dietary irritants, as many bladder issues are caused or aggravated by certain foods and beverages.  Common culprits include coffee, tea, soda pop, and acidic foods such as spicy food, citrus, tomatoes and berries.

Urologic evaluation

Can include:

  • physical exam
  • urinalysis with culture
  • bladder scan to rule out retention
  • possibly urodynamic testing  

Patients may also need cystoscopy, which is a quick easy procedure where the bladder is inspected with a small telescope.

Treatment Options

Many treatment options exist, which follow a treatment algorithm of increasing complexity depending on the patients' response to treatment.  Often patients can improve with dietary alteration alone.

There is also pelvic floor therapy called biofeedback which can help.  There are medications for this problem, which you may see frequently advertised on television.

Botox Injections

In difficult cases, some patients receive Botox injections in their bladder to calm the spasms, frequency and leakage.  We even place 'bladder pacemakers', also known as Interstim or sacral neuromodulation, which can be very helpful for bladder control.

Adult Pediatric Urology in Omaha, NE

Our Clinical Research Department was developed to fulfill our mission to provide high-quality patient centered care. When existing treatments fail or significantly lower your quality of life we seek out new, safe methods that give you more options and make further advancements in the fields of urology and urogynecology.

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