Spinal cord injuries are a leading cause of disability, and many people who suffer from them experience a range of bladder-related problems. Urologists in Tulsa OK can help to identify and treat these issues, as well as provide advice on how to manage them.
What is a Spinal Cord Injury?
- A spinal cord injury is a traumatic injury that affects the nervous system, leading to a loss of motor, sensory, and/or autonomic function below the site of the injury.
- Injuries to the spinal cord can be caused by a traumatic event, such as a fall, car accident, or sports injury, or by a medical condition such as a tumor or infection.
- Spinal cord injuries can be complete or incomplete, depending on the extent of the damage.
- Depending on the severity of the injury, a person may experience full or partial paralysis, as well as other physical and cognitive impairments.
How Spinal Cord Injuries Affect the Bladder
People with spinal cord injuries often experience bladder problems due to the disruption of the nerve signals that control bladder function. Incomplete injuries may cause problems with the ability to sense bladder fullness, while complete injuries can cause a complete loss of bladder control.
Damage to the spinal cord can also cause problems with bladder emptying, leading to the accumulation of urine in the bladder, which can increase the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs). In some cases, the bladder may become overly sensitive, leading to frequent and painful urination. In addition, people with spinal cord injuries may experience difficulty initiating urination, as well as difficulty with urination control and timing.
Treatment and Management of Bladder Problems
Urologists in Tulsa OK can help to identify and diagnose bladder problems caused by spinal cord injuries. Treatment may involve medications to help relax the bladder muscles, or a procedure to implant a catheter or other device to help with bladder emptying. In some cases, a patient may need to undergo surgery to repair the bladder or to implant a device to help with bladder control.
Physical therapy may also be recommended to help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which can help to improve bladder control. In addition, lifestyle changes, such as limiting caffeine intake and drinking plenty of water, may help to improve bladder control. For people with more severe bladder problems, an artificial urinary sphincter may be an option.
Spinal cord injuries can cause a range of bladder problems, including difficulty with bladder control and emptying. Urologists in Tulsa OK can help to diagnose and treat these issues, as well as provide advice on how to manage them. With proper treatment and management, people with spinal cord injuries can lead active and fulfilling lives.