What to Expect After Bladder Botox Injections

If you're considering Botox injections for your overactive bladder (OAB) or urge incontinence, you may be wondering what to expect after the procedure. Generally, the effects of Botox injections last for about 12 weeks, although some people may experience bladder control for up to 24 weeks. After this period, the Botox effect wears off and you'll need more injections. The injection itself is done in a clinic and is usually well tolerated by most patients.

It doesn't hurt as much as you'd expect, but you may experience some discomfort similar to menstrual cramps. This discomfort usually lasts no more than a couple of days. Botox injections are a plan B treatment for those who have not responded well or have been intolerant to bladder relaxing medications. The goal of bladder botox is to effectively treat persistent and disabling urinary incontinence of urgency, frequency and urgency.

These treatments use electrical stimulation of the sacral nerve, which can alter the functioning of the bladder and intestine. When Botox is injected into the bladder muscle, thick muscle bands, known as trabeculation, are treated. This can prevent bladder muscles from compressing too often or too intensely, reducing urinary urgency and frequency. The procedure involves placing a cystoscope in the bladder and injecting Botox into numerous sites in the bladder through a needle that is inserted through the cystoscope.

This device delivers a series of injections of Botox solution into the bladder muscle with a small needle that is passed through the endoscope. Although doctors do not recommend Botox in the bladder as the first line of treatment for OAB and other bladder problems, it is a viable and proven option if lifestyle changes and medications are not effective in relieving symptoms. It's important to understand that urge incontinence and overactive bladder aren't caused by physical activity or movement, such as coughing, exercising, or sneezing. A urologist can inject Botox into the bladder to treat urge incontinence or overactive bladder.

This helps your muscles relax, giving you more time to go to the bathroom when you feel the need to urinate. In addition, a bladder lift, also known as bladder suspension surgery or colposuspension, can help treat stress urinary incontinence. Some people who receive Botox injections for the OAB may experience side effects, such as an increase in the amount of urine left in the bladder after urination. Botox injections for the bladder are comparable in cost to most insurance coverage for oral medications, InterStim, or percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation (PTNS). Alex Shteynshlyuger is a certified urologist in New York City who specializes in treating men and women with urinary problems including frequent urination, difficulty emptying the bladder, urinary urgency, and incontinence.