When Does Overactive Bladder Require Treatment?

photograph of restroom sign

There’s no better way to start a day than waking up from a full eight hours of sleep. However, for those who suffer from an overactive bladder, achieving this feeling is more often a dream than a reality.

What Are Overactive Bladder Symptoms?

A group of urinary symptoms that includes a frequent urge to urinate and waking up at night to urinate, overactive bladder most often presents in women who have experienced pelvic surgery, a hysterectomy or childbirth.

“Overactive bladder is kind of a catch-all term for people that can’t make it to the bathroom or they go way too much during the day and it affects the quality of life,” said CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs urologist Dr. Seth Hollenbach.

While overactive bladder is not a terminal condition, it can lead to anxiety, depression and lack of consistent sleep in patients. Visiting a urologist and receiving treatment once early symptoms present themselves can help provide relief before overactive bladder becomes unbearable.

“I think anytime someone notices that their life is being controlled by a bathroom, they need to come in and see us,” Dr. Hollenbach said. “Whether that’s year one or year five (of symptoms), we want people to get treatment as early as possible.”

What Is The Best Overactive Bladder Treatment?

From medication and botox therapy to surgery with the InterStim Neurostimulator, there are a number of different treatment options for overactive bladder. Dr. Hollenbach was the first physician in Arkansas to be nationally recognized with a Center of Excellence award from Medtronic for excellent use of the InterStim System.

“The InterStim device is a neurostimulator that stimulates the nerves that help control the bladder,” he said. “There’s actually two parts to it, but neither is overly involved. Both of them are outpatient procedures that don’t take longer than five or ten minutes.”

Early detection and treatment following symptoms is the key to quickly improving quality of life for patients with overactive bladder. It can also lead to preventative care or treatment for more serious conditions with similar symptoms.

“I think anytime that somebody is concerned that their voiding is controlling their life, they need to be evaluated,” said Dr. Hollenbach. “Initially, we need to make sure it’s not a more serious condition like malignancy or kidney stones. When we know it’s not something severe, we can move on to the many options for improving voiding patterns and quality of life.”

Dr. Hollenbach is part of the team of specialists at the CHI St. Vincent Urology Clinic in Hot Springs, which treats diseases of the male and female urinary tract as well as male reproductive organs. To learn more about compassionate care and comprehensive services, visit: chistvincent.com/urology