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my dh has developed a pschological urge to pee - its taking over his life

(30 Posts)
oldkentroad Sun 17-May-09 08:52:15

6 months ago my dh noticed he needed to urinate a lot at work - and in meetings was especially bad.
He would have to run ro the loo, then when he got there, would just express a few drops.
This spread through to social times - when he was out with mates etc, he'd need to go to the loo every 10minutes, and not just due to drinking.
At home, or anywhere where he has free access to a loo he is fine, and goes hours without needing it.
He now won't go on a plane, as he needed the toilet badly when the plane was about to land one time, and he can't go to concerts etc, so he has missed out on all the kids school concerts.
He has seen his gp and a hypno therapist, but has had no improvement.
any advice? it is really getting him down

MaryBS Sun 17-May-09 08:57:56

I would go back again to the GP. What did he say the first time?

mumblecrumble Sun 17-May-09 08:59:55

Has he asked about his prostrate? Need not be sinester but swollen prostrate [gland that lives underneath the bladder} might be making it bad.

It sounds like anervous thing to be and perhaps some training in this area might be goos.

GO bakc to GP

GentleOtter Sun 17-May-09 08:59:59

Has he had his prostate checked oldkentroad?
Is there a WellMan clinic he could go to get checked out, in your area?

BonsoirAnna Sun 17-May-09 09:04:25

This is not a "psychological" urge to pee, but a very real physical need. Your DH should see his GP urgently smile.

oldkentroad Sun 17-May-09 09:17:46

his gp didn't think it was his prostate - i can't remember if its been checked or if there was something in the history that made him rule it out.
hes had urine samples sent off - the results came back normal.
We initially thought it might be prostate too.
he also had to keep a urine diary, which showed the complete contrast between him being relaxed and stressed in terms of urine volume and frequency.
he's been back to the gp a few times - the last time he was put on a very low dose of an antidepressant, but it hasn't really helped.
the gp asked about any anxiety factors, but before this everything was fine.

oldkentroad Sun 17-May-09 09:20:24

thanks for your messages. its a really frustrating condition - it seems so trivial yet its so debilitating

mumblecrumble Sun 17-May-09 09:22:46

I suffered with what sounded similar during my A level exams. Had to go all the time - noghtmare.

Did go when stress had lessened....

Psychological diffiuclties are real needs too!

Poor you guys.
Keep bugging the doctor about it. Make sure he really checks the prostrate

GentleOtter Sun 17-May-09 09:27:19

A similar problem was highlighted on "Embarrassing Illnesses" Ch.4 the other evening. link here
Your dh may ask to see a different GP or a referral to a Urologist.

oldkentroad Sun 17-May-09 09:47:08

thanks, i will make him go back to the gp. we almost feel he needs a pschiatrist as much as a urologist.

Kbear Sun 17-May-09 10:00:08

there are tablets a gp can prescribe to stop the urge to wee - my DH has a similar problem which wakes him up every half hour in the night and has just been prescribed them. The gp thinks it is connected with his shift work pattern, ie he is often at work at night so going to the loo is no problem but then when he's in bed his body is still operating as if he's awake IYKWIM.

shootfromthehip Sun 17-May-09 10:06:05

I had this too- it meant that I was terrified of travelling and would frequently end up getting off a bus and being stranded in the middle of no-where looking for a loo. It was all stress related with me too. I was put on tablets for anxiety (as it eventually graduated into panic attacks) and that really did help. I can't remember the name of them though as it was about 10 yrs ago now but it made my life a misery.

It's great that you are being so understanding as it's a miserable condition that I was really embarrassed and distressed about.

Good luck

howtotellmum Sun 17-May-09 15:08:32

see - look at the Overactive bladder forum.

There are lots of drugs he could take- one is given to kids who bed wet, it's a spray and delays the urge to "go". It's called desmopressin. Tell him t o see his GP. I think like all phobias, once he has gained control through drugs, he might be ok without them too.

EvenBetaDad Sun 17-May-09 19:21:35

oldkentroad - get to a proper urologist. I went through a nightmare decade with something similar. GP always said it was stress, phobia, etc. Total nonsense in my case.

I had a lot of urology tests but eventually I was diagnosed with a chronic condition called intersticial cystits. The diet tips on that link are excellent as are the other tips about getting through life, dealng with intimacy etc.

If DH starves himself for 24 hours and drinks just water he may well find he has no symptoms. That is what I found by accident. No one knows why it happens or the cure but mine is certainly triggered by certain types of foods. Again I suffered from simlar symptoms, really desperate urge to pee but little in the bladder.

If he is going to meetings, concerts, work, flying I srongly suggest he goes to Boots tomorrow and buys a bag male Drypants. These are like pull up nappies but not bulky and will give him confidence to 'hold on' and also if he does need to let a small amount of urine out to relieve the pain he will not wet his clothes. Make sure he puts them on the right way round though.

Please do write back to me if you need more info. There are many other conditions it could be but this basic approach with a change of diet and Drypants will buy him time to get treament without losing his job.

Sadly intersticial cysttis has no cure that know of but I now live a completely normal life and enjoy myself. I had my gall baldder out recently and changed my diet and it has made a huge difference too. Fatty foods, acid foods, yoghurt and milk and alcohol really aggravate mine.

He needs lots of love and support. He is not doing it on purpose. He is embarrased and feels terrible. He probably dreads going out of the house.

EvenBetaDad Sun 17-May-09 19:27:50

Boots Staydry Pants - Super Pull Ups (Medium)

See specifications here

Get the Super absorbency ones.

EvenBetaDad Sun 17-May-09 19:34:28

oldkentroad - they tried me on antidepressants to as well as therapy. That did not work. I even had an operation on my bladder. They were all just guessing until I got myself to the right consultant. I have had about 20 digital rectal exminatios (prostate) as well as prostate specific antigen tests. No infections of any kind found either.

Not all consultants are aware of the condition and certainly no GP has.

Like DH I became very depressed about it.

howtotellmum Sun 17-May-09 20:34:24

evenb- I am sorry you have that horrible condition.

However, it think the OPs DH has an overactive bladder-from how she describes it- as he is fine at home when he is not stressed.

IC is due to inflammation and food/drink is often a factor, but OAB is down more to the bladder muscle being overactive- and this can have some psychological aspects to it.

There are lots of drugs that help OAB, as well as bladder training- he could try seeing the local continence nurse at a continence clinic as well as his GP.

OP_ i hope you find the info useful- there are treatmetns and I think he will find something to help.

CMOTdibbler Sun 17-May-09 20:35:57

He def needs to go back to the GP and ask to see a urologist - dynamic flow tests can show if there is any sort of blockage or problem in getting the urine out, or whether it is an urge problem.

There are loads of different drugs for the different conditions that can cause frequency, so he def should not just suffer with it

oldkentroad Sun 17-May-09 23:22:48

thanks again. He is ok at home, and doesn't need the loo in the night.
i may get him some of the pants though - they may help him relax, if he will wear them, even if just for flights etc.. i've just spoken to him - he hasn't had his prostate checked, but the history meant the gp has ruled it out. hopefully these messages will show him that he does have to push for more tests.

solidgoldSneezeLikeApig Sun 17-May-09 23:28:46

He definitely needs to have his prostate checked, the GP is being a fuckwit (unless the 'history' is that his prostate has in fact been removed or something).

EvenBetaDad Mon 18-May-09 08:49:49

oldkentroad - all of the many conditions and tests mentioned above are all possibilities. Another possibility is bladder stones.

However, as one urolgy consulant confessed to me - TBH, urology is very much guess work and it can be extremely difficult to pin down specific conditions. All bladder conditions present with the same basic symptom - frequency of the desire to urinate and constant discomfort. Indeed, I have been through every single test and have every single diagnosis described above. There is no indignity I do not know. At least I understand a little of what DW had to go through while pregant now.

My experience was not to discount any possible diagnosis or cure and to press very hard to get all the tests done in short order. Unfortunately, it sounds like your DHs GP has already dismissed prostate as a possibility - presumably because DH is not the right age for it. The other thing I found was that the symptoms have the capacity to destroy your life and doctors do not do anythng to help you get through life while they do their tests.

Whatever it turns out to be, and it can take years to find out, the most distressing thing for me was the length of time it took and the impact of the symptoms on my life. Believing it to be stress because that is what doctors kept telling me I gave up my career. In fact I was stressed by the condition itself. The physical condition fed back into stress. I agree with Bonsoir - this sounds like a physical condition and I quiet understand it is now feeding back into a psychological condition of nervousness about being 'caught short' and general depression and stress. It is hard to separate the physical and mental impacts.

I often found I went through a battery of tests and then when they came back negative the GP/consultant lost interest. I sort of got the feeling sometimes that they thought 'its all in your mind, just stop being silly' was their diagnosis. I know now that it is a physical chronic condition but it did not help being told it was in my mind. I felt like it was being told it was my fault and I was just making it up.

Being able to 'hang on' at home but not at work is avery familiar story to me. It may be due to work stress but more likely it may just be the fear of embarrasing oneself in public that is most unbearable but that disappears at home so making the condition bearable and ignorable while say watching TV is my experience even though the physical pain was/is always there.

The sensation of contantly needing to use the toilet in a meeting, needing to get off a bus, being deperate to use the toilet during landing procedure on a plane, missing children's plays, not wanting to go to go on long car journeys. These are all very familiar stories to me.

Yes please do get DH some of those pants. It will transform his life by giving him confidence while he finds a cure. Please do not let it destroy his life and career. Being able to bear the pain and discomfort is one thing but constantly feeling embarrased, stressed and curtailing your life is really something that can be dealt with and only at 70 pence a day I think it is worth it. No one will be able to see he is wearing them and I do not let my DW see me wearing them so she does not feel differently about me.

oldkentroad Mon 18-May-09 10:53:14

i get the impressionn that the gp does think my dh is being a bit of a hypochondriac, and doesn't fully appreciate what its like. it does seem to be a case of - try these pills for a month and come back at the end -

evenbetadad - did you ever tell your friends about it? i wonder whether by telling our close group of friends, it would take away the pressure of holding it in, and may settle down when out with them? i'm not sure dh would ever want to try out the theory though.

EvenBetaDad Mon 18-May-09 13:12:46

oldkentroad - I have never told a friend or my former employers. It was sheer hell. I just resigned my positon at work. I do not think it will get better by telling friends. It will make DH more embarassed.

I find wearing pants is a physical way of helping with the psychological impact which is huge. Just being able to be relaxed and happy and knowing you I was not going to have an accident was/is a huge help. I only wear them occcassionally such as for a plane journey or for long meetings. I can now deal with the pain as I really understand my condition as well. I know that I do not really need to 'go' its just the sensation. As with your DH, I only often find I have a small amount in my bladder but the pain feels like I have not been to the toilet for hours and have a very full bladder.

I have been in pain all morning with it but have only been to the loo twice.

Your GP is treating your DH just like I was treated. They just never think of the person and how it affects their life, if they cannot find a cure they just ignore people. I can never be 'cured' but I eventually was lucky to find an incredibly understanding and caring urologist at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford who was making a special study of intersticial cystitis. It was a revalation and just havng someone acknowledge me as a person was a real comfort.

I am not saying that is your DHs condition is intrstitial cystitis but the urology unit at Oxford may well be worth getting a referal to from your GP. They will look at the full range of possibilites. Be demanding if you have to be.

I do not have the consultant's name with me at the moment but wil try and find it over the weekend. Please do show this thread to your DH - at least he will then know that someone knows exactly how he feels and that he is not 'making it all up'.

EvenBetaDad Mon 18-May-09 13:38:56

Sorry - I can see I have spelled it in all sorts of different ways. It is called:

Interstitial cystitis and also known as 'painful bladder syndrome'.

FrankMustard Mon 18-May-09 13:42:21

sorry, ot read all the posts but after seeing OP post, could it be irritable bladder?
Loads of people know about irritable bowel syndrome, but irritable bladder syndrome is also a condition and it can make life hell feeling the need to pee all the time, even if there's not much there. Check with gp who could refer for bladder scan to check it's emptying properly and then if everyting looks fine, it's quite possibly irritable bladder. Friend suffered from it for a while but managed to get over it and he was exactly as OP describes DH.
sorry if repeating any other posts.

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