When an individual is unable to empty their bladder this condition is called urinary retention. Urinary retention can consist of the inability to urinate at all or the bladder does not completely empty when urinating. When an individual experiences the total inability to urinate, this is considered a medical emergency as this condition is life threatening if left untreated.
While anyone of any age can experience urinary retention, it is most commonly seen in men who are over the age of fifty that have a prostate enlargement. Women can experience urinary retention when the bladder has dropped or moved from its normal position.
Causes of Urinary Retention
Urinary retention may be caused by some type of urinary blockage or a problem with the nerves that control the communication between the brain and the bladder. These disease is also sometimes caused by a weak bladder muscle. There are numerous conditions that can cause damage to the nerves that control the signals between the bladder and brain.
These conditions include enlargement of the prostate gland, diabetes, stroke, vaginal childbirth, infections that affect the spinal chord and brain, multiple sclerosis, injury or trauma to the pelvis, injury or trauma to the spinal chord or brain, heavy metal poisoning, and nerve damage that is present at birth.
Numerous medications can also cause urinary retention – particularly those that are utilized to calm overactive nerve signals. These include medications that are used to treat muscle spasms, stomach cramps, anxiety, depression, and allergies, as well as those that are used to treat other bladder problems such as urinary incontinence or overactive bladder.
A bladder stone that becomes lodged within the urinary tract can also cause bladder retention as a larger stone can block the urine from flowing through the opening of the urethra. Constipation can also cause urinary retention if a hard stool in the rectum pushes against the urethra and bladder causing the urethra to become pinched or closed.
Treatment of Urinary Retention
Acute urinary retention which is the condition in which a patient is unable to urinate is treated by inserting a catheter directly into the urethra in order to drain the bladder. This will prevent the bladder from permanent damage.
Some cases of urinary system problems may be only temporary such as when an individual receives anesthesia for a surgical procedure. Once the effects of the anesthetic wear off the patient will typically regain the ability to urinate on their own. Patients who experience chronic symptoms may have to use a catheter on a regular basis when other forms of treatment are ineffective or the patient experiences chronic urinary system problems that is acute. In these cases the patient can be taught to catheterize themselves as needed and how to utilize the proper sterilization techniques in order to avoid a urinary tract infection.
Surgical procedures for the treatment of this problems may also be performed including an internal urethrotomy for treating a urethral stricture in men and surgery to repair a fallen bladder in women. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of chronic urinary retention it is essential that you seek a medical evaluation as soon as possible because this condition can lead to serious complications when left untreated. In the event that you experience a total loss of the ability to urinate or acute urinary retention, it is essential that you receive emergency medical attention.
About the Author: Anne Ahira is an established entrepreneur and successful coach in her country of Indonesia. Her success story has been published in many nationwide publications in Indonesia.
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