Overactive Bladder

Definition

Overactive bladder (OAB) is a common condition that affects millions of Americans. About 33 million Americans have overactive bladder. Thirty percent of all men and 40 percent of all women in the United States live with OAB symptoms. But the number of people suffering from OAB is most likely much larger. That’s because many people living with OAB don’t ask for help. Some are embarrassed. They don’t know how to talk to their healthcare professional about their symptoms. Other people don’t ask for help because they think there aren’t any treatments for OAB

Risk Factors

Risk factors of overactive bladder include:

  • Age
  • Those who have suffered a stroke
  • Those who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease

Symptoms

The main symptom of overactive bladder is a strong and sudden urge to urinate.  This causes many people to feel as though they will leak urine if they do not get to a bathroom.  Some people do leak urine after experiencing this feeling.

Diagnosis

Overactive Bladder is not hard to diagnose, but there are a few exams that can be performed to determine why this is happening including:

  • General exam and medical history
  • Bladder diary
  • Urine culture
  • Bladder scan
  • Cystoscopy
  • Urodynamic testing

Treatment

There are multiple treatments that can help you to control OAB.  Some of the treatment options include dietary changes, smoking cessation, physical therapy, , medical and surgical treatments, or managing leaks with certain products or devices.  Your healthcare provider will be able to offer insight in to which option is best for you.

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