Bedwetting (cont.)

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How common is secondary bedwetting?

Few children with bedwetting have a medical cause for the condition.

What causes secondary bedwetting?

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Urinary tract infections, metabolic disorders (such as diabetes), external pressure on the bladder (such as from a rectal stool mass), and spinal cord disorders are among the causes of secondary bedwetting.

How is the cause of secondary bedwetting diagnosed?

A complete history and thorough physical examination are central to the initial evaluation of a child with primary bedwetting. A urinalysis and urine culture generally complete the workup. Further laboratory and radiological studies are for the child with secondary bedwetting.

What is the treatment for secondary bedwetting?

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Therapy of secondary bedwetting is directed at the primary problem causing the symptom of wetting the bed. As expected, cure rates vary depending on the cause of the loss of control.

What is the prognosis for children with bedwetting?

In the medical world of today, both primary and secondary bedwetting can be a manageable condition. Treatment programs can successfully eliminate both parental and patient anxiety, frustration, and embarrassment.

Resources for parents


Brooks, L.J., and H.I. Topol. "Enuresis in Children with Sleep Apnea." Journal of Pediatrics 142.5 May 2003: 515-518.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/21/2015

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Bedwetting - Treatments for Children Question: Bedwetting is frustrating and embarrassing. How was your child's enuresis treated?
Bedwetting - Experience Question: Causes and treatment vary. Please describe your family's experience with bedwetting.
Bedwetting - Causes in Children Question: If known, what was the cause of your child's bedwetting?
Bedwetting - Treatments for Adults Question: Do you or an adult relative have bedwetting issues? What kinds of treatments have been effective?