Without treatment, the complications of a neurogenic bladder can include kidney damage and life threatening urinary tract infections (UTIs).

Neurogenic bladder is a condition that happens when your neurological system and your bladder don’t communicate the way they should.

This can be the result of multiple conditions, infections, and injuries, and it can lead to a variety of complications.

The most common complication of a neurogenic bladder is frequent UTIs.

Additional complications can occur without treatment and can include kidney conditions such as:

  • kidney stones
  • kidney infections
  • kidney damage
  • kidney failure

It can also cause conditions such as urinary retention, skin breakdown, and pressure sores.

The most common complication of a neurogenic bladder is repeated UTIs. This can lead to symptoms such as painful urination and abdominal pain.

It can also lead to a worsening of the symptoms of neurogenic bladder, such as frequent urination and urinary urgency. The use of catheters as a treatment for neurogenic bladder increases the risk of UTIs.

The underlying cause of neurogenic bladder can change UTI symptoms.

For instance, people with a neurogenic bladder as a result of conditions such as spinal cord injuries are more likely to have symptoms such as fever, heart palpitations, and muscle spasms when a UTI develops.

Beyond UTIs, short-term complications of neurogenic bladder can include:

  • reduced quality of life
  • interrupted sleep due to urinary urgency at night
  • skin irritation and breakdown
  • pressure sores

If neurogenic bladder persists, and symptoms aren’t relieved with treatment, further complications can occur. These long-term complications can be more serious and can require additional medical treatment.

Some complications, such as urinary tract deterioration, are degenerative ― which means that they typically become more severe and harder to manage over time.

Long-term complications of neurogenic bladder can include:

Can neurogenic bladder cause kidney failure?

Neurogenic bladder can lead to kidney failure.

The increased pressure in the bladder can transfer to the kidney. This can damage your kidney. Over time, this can lead to kidney failure. You can read more about kidney failure here.

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The exact life expectancy with neurogenic bladder varies. Several underlying factors can cause neurogenic bladder. Since this is true, life expectancy with neurogenic bladder can be very different for different people with the condition.

For instance, neurogenic bladder can be a complication of diabetes, stroke, brain tumor, or recent pelvic surgery. All of those underlying factors have very different possible effects on life expectancy.

But neurogenic bladder can affect life expectancy on its own. UTIs can be serious without treatment. People with neurogenic bladder can be at increased risk for serious and life threatening UTIs.

This is due to the neurological conditions associated with neurogenic bladder that can also reduce sensations that commonly signal a UTI. This can let an infection grow and spread before treatment begins, making it harder to cure.

Also, neurogenic bladder can damage the kidneys. It can even lead to kidney failure. People who develop kidney failure and are in dialysis treatment have a life expectancy of about another 5–10 years, although many people live longer.

Still, treatment can help prevent complications. It’s best to talk with your doctor about how neurogenic bladder will affect your overall health and life expectance.

Neurogenic bladder is a condition that happens when the nerves in your bladder muscles stop working the way they should. It can lead to symptoms such as urinary frequency, urinary urgency, urinary incontinence, and incomplete bladder emptying.

The most common complication of a neurogenic bladder is a UTI.

Additional complications can include kidney stones, kidney damage, kidney infections, and urinary retention, along with an increased risk of serious conditions such as kidney failure cysts, and tumors.