This type of neurogenic bladder is caused by nerve damage and can create symptoms of incontinence or frequent urination.
An uninhibited neurogenic bladder is a condition that causes difficulty with bladder management due to a disconnect between your neurological system, such as your brain or spinal cord, and your bladder.
People with an inhibited neurogenic bladder experience symptoms such as urge incontinence and urinary frequency. Developing an uninhibited neurogenic bladder is often a complication of medical conditions such as stroke, brain tumor, spinal lesion, or Parkinson’s disease.
Treatment can vary depending on the individual and the underlying cause, but it might include lifestyle changes, medications, nerve treatments, or surgery.
Keep reading to learn more.
An uninhibited neurogenic bladder happens when the nerves and bladder no longer communicate as they should. Often, this is the result of nerve damage. For instance, an uninhibited neurogenic bladder is common after a stroke because a stroke can damage areas of the brain that communicate with the rest of your body.
Other potential causes include:
The primary symptom of an uninhibited neurogenic bladder is often urge incontinence or leaking urine. This can be a few drops or a large amount of urine, and it can happen while a person is awake or asleep. It happens because damaged nerve connections cause the bladder to contract more often than normal.
Additional symptoms can include:
If you’ve been experiencing these symptoms, especially if they’ve lasted for more than 2 weeks, you may want to discuss them with your primary doctor or a urologist for further evaluation.
There are several treatment options that can help an uninhibited neurogenic bladder. Some treatments are lifestyle- or behavior-based. This means that they involve changing bathroom and hydration habits to help manage your uninhibited neurogenic bladder.
If these treatments do not work, medical options, such as medications, injections, nerve therapy, or surgery, can be alternate options.
Treatment options for an uninhibited neurogenic bladder include:
- Dietary changes: For some people, eliminating or reducing the amount of food and beverages that can stimulate the bladder is an option that can reduce symptoms. This can include soda, coffee, tea, and spicy foods.
- Scheduled bathroom use: This treatment involves not urinating anytime you feel an urge but instead waiting until preset scheduled times. Setting up a schedule of specific times to use the bathroom can help train your bladder and reduce incontinence.
- Delayed bathroom use: Similar to scheduled bathroom use, this treatment involves waiting instead of urinating as soon as you feel an urge. For this treatment, you’ll wait a few minutes before going. You’ll then build up the amount of time you’re able to wait.
- Double voiding: During this treatment, you’ll always attempt to urinate twice when you use the bathroom. You’ll wait at least several seconds after urinating once and will then attempt to urinate again. This treatment can help reduce the continuous urge to urinate that some people with uninhibited neurogenic bladder feel.
- Pelvic floor therapy: Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles can help manage incontinence. You can read more about pelvic floor exercises here.
- Medication: Medication to help manage the symptoms of uninhibited neurogenic bladder is available. There are oral and topical options.
- Botox injections: Botox injections can help relax your bladder muscles to calm overactivity and reduce symptoms. This treatment might need to be repeated once or twice a year.
- Sacral neuromodulation (SNS) Therapy: SNS therapy alters the nerve signals between the brain and the spinal cord. A thin wire and a small battery are placed under your skin, and the wire is attached to your pelvic nerves. Signals sent through this wire help manage bladder muscles.
- Percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation (PTNS): PTNS is another nerve treatment option. It involves a healthcare professional inserting a needle into the tibial nerve of the leg and sending electrical impulses up the needle. Treatments are done about every 12 weeks.
- Surgery: There are a few surgical options that can help treat uninhibited neurogenic bladder. This can include removing weakened bladder muscle, reinforcing the urinary sphincter, or inserting an indwelling catheter to divert urine.
The cost and coverage for any uninhibited neurogenic bladder treatments depends on the procedure you have done, your location, and your specific insurance plan.
For medical payment purposes, uninhibited neurogenic bladder is classified alongside other neurological bladder conditions under the ICD-10 code, N31.9. Knowing this code can help you look up potential costs with your insurance provider.
Uninhibited neurogenic bladder is a condition that can cause urinary leaking and urgency, along with symptoms such as incontinence, urinary tract infections, and urinary frequency. It happens when your neurological system and your bladder do not communicate correctly as a result of nerve damage.
This nerve damage is often in the brain or spinal cord and is linked to conditions such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury, spinal lesions, and brain and spinal tumors.
Treatment depends on the severity of symptoms and the underlying cause but might include lifestyle changes, medications, injections, nerve therapies, or surgery.