Bladder Spasms (cont.)
In this Article
- What do bladder spasms feel like?
- Who is most likely to develop bladder spasms?
- What causes bladder spasms?
- What are nervous system disorders that lead to bladder spasms?
- Which types of surgery may lead to bladder spasms?
- What are other causes of bladder spasms?
- What is the treatment for bladder spasms?
- What are complementary and alternative therapies for bladder spasms?
- When should someone see a doctor for bladder spasms?
- Find a local Urologist in your town
What Causes Bladder Spasms?
There are a number of different causes of bladder spasms. The cramping pain could be due to something as simple as your diet or a medication that you are taking, or it could be associated with changes in blood supply and function of the nerves controlling the bladder.
However, bladder spasms may be the result of an infection or a recent surgery, or they may occur if you have nerve or muscle damage. So it's important to see a doctor to determine the cause.
In some cases, your doctor may not be able to identify the cause. When this happens, the condition is called idiopathic bladder spasms.
Some common causes of bladder spasms are:
- Urinary tract infection (UTI): Bladder pain and burning are a common symptom of a UTI.
- Interstitial cystitis (IC), also called painful bladder syndrome: This condition refers to bladder and urinary pain that is not due to other causes, such as a urinary tract infection. Pain is recurring and often severe.
- Catheter use: A catheter is a thin tube used to drain urine from the body, often after surgery. It is placed into the urethra and up into your bladder. Bladder spasms are a common and sometimes distressing complication of catheter usage.
Nervous System Disorders That Lead to Bladder Spasms
The feeling you get when you need to empty your bladder is normally an involuntary response. The brain signals the bladder muscle when it is time to tighten (contract) and release urine. However, certain nervous system disorders cause damage to the nerves that send signals between the brain and the bladder. When this happens, the bladder does not work properly. "Neurogenic bladder" is the general term for bladder problems due to nerve damage.
Nervous system disorders and injury that can cause bladder spasms include:
- Brain tumor
- Cerebral palsy
- Herpes zoster infection that affects the nerves in the sacrum
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson's disease
- Multiple system atrophy (Shy-Drager syndrome)
- Spinal cord injury
- Stroke that has caused brain damage
- Diabetic neuropathy (when the nerves are damaged by longstanding diabetes)
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