Botox for Overactive Bladder
A Guide for Women
1. What is Overactive Bladder (OAB)?
2. How does Botox work for OAB?
3. How effective is Botox for OAB?
4. What are the risks?
5. What can I expect during the procedure? 6. Instructions for after the procedure
What is Overactive Bladder (OAB)?
Overactive bladder is a common condition caused by an involuntary contraction of the bladder muscle (detrusor) leading to urinary frequency, urgency, nighttime voiding, and leakage of urine. This can have a significant impact on your quality of life.
How does Botox work for OAB?
Botox is used in patients who have not gotten relief from medications or other therapies. Botox is injected directly into the bladder and works by blocking nerve impulses to the bladder muscle causing temporary relaxation of the muscle. This can stop uncontrolled bladder contractions to allow for more normal functioning of the bladder.
How effective is Botox for OAB?
Botox takes approximately 2 weeks to work after the procedure. Our goal is to see a 50% reduction in your urinary symptoms after the procedure. This may mean less urinary leakage, less frequent urination, and/or fewer nighttime voids. It is rare that all of your symptoms resolve. Botox treatments typically last an average of 6 months. The procedure may be repeated when the symptoms return.
What are the risks?
Risks of the procedure include, but are not limited to:
- Bleeding – it is normal to see some blood in your urine after the procedure. This will normally resolve on its own over the next several days.
- Infection – you will receive an antibiotic after your procedure to help to prevent this.
- Pain and discomfort – You may experience burning with urination, urinary frequency and urgency the first few times you void after the procedure.
- Difficulty urinating – Some patients may need to temporarily use an intermittent catheter to help to empty their bladder until it regains its strength.
What can I expect during the procedure?
The procedure can be performed in our clinic. You will first be asked to provide a urinary sample to ensure that you don’t have a urinary tract infection. If it appears that you do, you will be treated with an antibiotic and asked to reschedule. Prior to the procedure, we will instill a topical numbing agent directly into your bladder. The physician will then look inside the bladder with a small scope called a cystoscope and inject the Botox directly into the bladder. Overall, you should plan on being at the clinic for about 60 minutes.
Instructions for after the procedure.
Most women can resume normal activities after the procedure. You may drive yourself home afterwards. Be sure to drink several glasses of water after your procedure to help reduce bleeding and discomfort. Avoid fluids containing alcohol, caffeine, or carbonation for 24 hours as they may irritate the bladder lining. Taking a warm bath or holding a warm damp washcloth over the urethral opening may also help relieve any discomfort.
Contact our office immediately at 913-262-3000 if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Trouble urinating
- Heavy bleeding such as clots larger than a quarter
- Chills or fever greater than 101 degrees
- Confusion, disorientation or agitation
- Severe abdominal pain
In rare occasions, the Botox can cause an allergic reaction. Seek emergent care if you experience difficulty breathing, vision problems, or generalized weakness.