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Overactive bladder...would love some positive support

(18 Posts)
Cakemuncher Thu 30-Dec-10 18:23:27

Hello all and apologies for the long post.

I will be nine weeks post natal on Saturday. I had an emergency C-section. I had an overactive bladder before pregnancy but, to be honest, I didn't realise it at the time. 6 months into the pregnancy, everything got worse. After the birth of my lovely daughter, I saw a uro-gyn nurse who told me that it was too soon to do anything formal about the problem as things could right themselves but that it can take up to six months before the body really recovers from pregnancy. She recmmended an informal pattern of timed voids in the meantime and said to come back if things hadn't righted themselves in about 3 months. After seeing her, I was referred to a physo who got me to fill out a frequency chart and measured my fluid intake. After a couple of weeks, she said that I didn't really need timed voids because I can often hold off for a few hours. However,my problem is that I feel the urge for the toilet all the time, even when I don't act on it - it's very, very uncomfortable. I also find the fluids difficult to manage - if I take any quantity of liquid, it makes me want to pee! The physio is now going to consult with uro-gyn to see where we go from here.

I have had quite a few bad days with the problem which makes me feel like I am going backwards! This is why I am posting. It is really getting me down, to the extent that it is almost spoiling my time with my LO because all I can think about is my bladder. My doctor has suggested that meds might be the route to go down. I would really like to try accupuncture, but I have been told that I would need to check with physio if that was okay. My physio though, is not keen on mixing approaches.

I would love to hear some positive experiences from anyone who has experienced a similar problem. Has anyone else had success with meds, or even alterhative therapies? I have tried posting before on the post-pregnancy bit of forums but I think a lot of people are embarrassed about this kind of problem!

cabbageroses Thu 30-Dec-10 19:10:21

You might get some response here, but have you heard of COB?
They have a very good forum.

Some people find either amitriptyline or Vesicare can help.

www.cob.org

sorry if that's not right- might be UK after it.

cabbageroses Thu 30-Dec-10 19:11:06

www.cobfoundation.org

TotalChaos Thu 30-Dec-10 20:47:52

I have had similar trouble recently i have found cutting back on coffee and replacing woith other drinks helps, caffeine can irritate the bladder a bit i believe

indigobarbie Thu 30-Dec-10 23:05:08

Hi I want to give you positive hope as I too had serious issues a few years back. Just as you describe I was having the needing to pee feeling 24/7, and my bladder felt as if it was on fire and about to burst (even after emptying it). Disturbed my sleep, my moods everything, my job etc etc.

I was also asked to do the timed voids, but tbh this didn't help me either, as I could hold on for a few hours but the need to pee sensation still stayed with me no matter what. They seemed to think my bladder had a capacity issue, which it doesn't. It's just the need to pee all the time.

I was given pelvic floor exercises to do, this actually made me worse, so I stopped them. I also removed all caffeine from my diet and literally only drank water (cranberry made me much much worse). There was never ever any sign of infection in my wee samples.
Have you seen this website [http://http://www.ichelp.org/Page.aspx?pid=329 interstitial cystitis] I have wondered if this is what I might have. It's worth a read.

You are only a few weeks down the road after your c section so this must be awful for you. I too had an emcs and due to severe SPD I had a catheter in whilst in the ward. I don't know if this made me better or worse. I have tried Vesicare which can take the edge off the 'urge' sensation. In my case I found that honoring the urge actually made it disappear (sometimes after a few days though). I think it really takes over your life and no amount of not thinking about it helps. I think my symptoms started when I tried to do a juicing diet, and a few days after this all the problems started. Fast forward to this year and I did some 'slimfast' shakes in an attempt to lose some babyweight, low and behold my bladder didn't like it. Also the painkillers diclofenac for my c-section pain, I wondered if these were making me worse? I believe the connection between these things is foods/drinks etc with high potassium content in them. This is where the interstitial comes into play.

HTH and I really feel for you, but please don't let the Dr's fob you off. Physios won't want to let you try another therapy in case it interferes with theirs.

You might find it takes a while for you to figure out what's going on. I had to cross ref everything I ate/drank in an attempt to make a connection, I still don't actually have a proper diagnosis, but I don't have the issues as frequently as I did. There was talk of me having a 'urethral diverticulum' but this was also inconclusive. Sorry for the huge huge post, just wanted to let you know there are others out there. Also, as an aside, I had a friend who had similar probs and she had fibroids on her womb, which I believe were putting extra pressure on her bladder.

indigobarbie Thu 30-Dec-10 23:06:13

www.ichelp.org/Page.aspx?pid=329
try again interstitial cystitis website

moocowme Fri 31-Dec-10 11:45:52

yep i had this and no its not cystitis. the answer (after finding a nice good female gyno) was a low level of an anti depressent. seems a side effect is to help your bladder feel better. was in agony before hand but a 1000 times better after starting treatment. 6 months on and felt fine. had a short relapse sometime latter and got some tablets and was fine.

indigobarbie Fri 31-Dec-10 12:20:51

moocowme, was it amitryptiline? think I might go and find out about this too

Cakemuncher Fri 31-Dec-10 12:39:17

Thank you for your replies folks. It's good know that I am not a freak of nature! Indigobarbie, my situation is eerily like yours - I even had severe SPD! Sorry to hear that you are having a few problems again, but I gather you get some relief from them?

Moocowme, my gp suggested some pills, though uroo-gyn might be reluctant. I might push for them. I have secretly organised an accupuncture session! I probably won't tell my physio about it. At least I know that other folk have experienced improvements. I am quite an anxious and pessimistic sort which doesn't really help matters so hearing positive outcomes is very helpful. Thanks again.

whyohwhywhy Fri 31-Dec-10 14:10:55

sounds awful poor you sad Has your gp checked that you don't have a prolapsed bladder? Sorry if that's totally off the mark but I've read a lot on here about this, apparently its quite common after vaginal deliveries. I know my bladder isn't as strong as it was before 2 large babies...

Cakemuncher Fri 31-Dec-10 16:39:22

Thanks whyohwhy but I'm fairly sure it isn't a prolapse. I had a section and I have had a recent ultrasound so I'm sure anything like that would have shown up in that.

moocowme Sun 02-Jan-11 10:39:10

i had severe spd as well but cant say the two are linked (i am just one of theose people who get the very worst of any complication going)

get the pills, they are fab. but give them time to work. you can always go to a higher dose as well.

i had a lovely gyno/ob and she said that having a CS was not the issue it was having my bladder pummled 24/7 for several months when pregnant with a very active baby.

Cakemuncher Sun 02-Jan-11 14:45:39

Thanks moocowme, that's pretty positive stuff. I have heard that pills can take a while to kick in and that sometimes it takes a bit of experimenting to get the right one, but I am definitely going to ask if I can give them a try.

moocowme Mon 03-Jan-11 11:06:22

i had no side effects other than feeling a lot happier on them - i think i had a bit of undiagnosed pnd but they worked so that ws a relief.

i found it best to take one just before bed as nights where the worst waking up with an uncontorllable urge and not beingable to get to the loo on time. i could manage daytime but it still hurt and feltuncomfortable mst of the time.

Cakemuncher Sat 08-Jan-11 18:26:18

Moocowme, can I ask you what the name of your medication was? I have just started on one called oxybutin which I don't think is an anti-depressant. I have the bladder pain and discomfort as well, it's horrible and I can't wait till I can feel normal again. I don't think I have pnd, but I do have a bit of anxiety which has been a problem for me in the past.

moocowme Sun 09-Jan-11 11:04:12

i cant remember what it was, but i do know it was a low dose of an antidepressent as my fab gyno went thru all this with me. and yes i do think it helped with the anxiety that this problem caused as well.

cabbageroses Sun 09-Jan-11 14:17:30

It is amitriptyline.

If you go to the COB foundation link you will find loads there about this.

Cakemuncher Sun 09-Jan-11 18:22:14

Thanks for those replies. This thread has been really helpful for me. I don't know why GP started me on the one she did, but apperently it is another regular med that they use for this problem. It's good to know the name of the other one in case this one doesn't work. Fingers crossed though that it will.

I get myself into such a tizzy over this. Despite having been tested twice, once in July and once in October, I have this bizarre paranoid fear of urine retention. It's not logical as I am capable of peeing normal amounts, but then anxiety does strange things to you.

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