Botox for Bladder Condition?

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By News Team on July 15, 2022


Fact Check: Botox is only for wrinkles.

Botox is widely known for reducing wrinkles, but can it also help treat another common issue that can start to plague us as we age?
Urinary incontinence is leaking of urine that you can't control. According to the Urology Care Foundation, a full quarter to a third of men and women in the U.S. suffer from urinary incontinence. In addition, about 33 million adults have overactive bladder (OAB), or symptoms of urgency and frequency
Because of the stigma and embarrassment surrounding the condition, the number could be even higher. In addition to the physical symptoms, urinary incontinence can also negatively affect people’s social lives and mental well-being.
We talked with Carilion Clinic urogynecologist Jerod Greer, M.D., about how an FDA-approved Botox procedure can help people who suffer from pelvic floor disorders and incontinence. He says the procedure—intravesical Botox—is highly effective.
"Botox has been great,” he said. “It’s an outpatient office procedure and you don’t have to go to the OR for it, it’s a therapy that about 90% of patients will get a good response to, and it’s something that on average the effect of the Botox will last for around six months but anywhere up to a year.”

In addition, Botox can reduce or eliminate the need for medication for some patients.

People with incontinence:

  • Feel a sudden, hard to control urge to urinate
  • Involuntary pass urine as soon as you feel the urge
  • Urinate frequently, up to eight or more times per day
  • Wake up two or more times in the night to urinate

Urinary incontinence is often linked to aging, but other risk factors exist. For women, the risk increases with each pregnancy and delivery she has—even if her children are delivered by Cesarean section. Menopause can lead to urinary incontinence as well.

For men, those with prostate problems are at increased risk.
And for all adults, risk factors include:

  • Certain medications
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking

If you have any of those risk factors or experience symptoms of OAB, talk to your primary care provider.

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