Bladder Spasms

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Quick GuideUrinary Incontinence: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Urinary Incontinence: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Complementary and Alternative Therapies

Acupuncture. Some research has suggested that bladder-specific acupuncture may significantly reduce bladder muscle contractions and the urge to use the bathroom.

Biofeedback. Biofeedback is a method that teaches the mind how to control normally automated body functions. Bladder training is a type of biofeedback. Some doctors believe biofeedback and behavioral changes work better than medicines for treating urge incontinence. A combination of biofeedback and medications may work best.

Botox. In studies, botulinum-A toxin has been shown to reduce nerve-related bladder spasms in children and adults. Botox prevents nerves from releasing chemicals that tell muscles to contract. The Botox is injected directly into the bladder muscle wall.

When to See a Doctor

Call your doctor for an appointment if you have:

  • Pain or cramping in your pelvic or lower abdominal area

  • Pain or burning while urinating

  • Urgent or frequent need to use the bathroom

If you have or think you are having bladder spasms, it is important that you see a doctor for a proper diagnosis. Your symptoms may be due to an infection that can be treated. In rare cases, bladder spasms may be a sign of a serious underlying condition.

WebMD Medical Reference


The National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse web site: "Nerve Disease and Bladder Control." web site: "Interstitial Cystitis."

American Family Physician web site: "Interstitial Cystitis: Urgency and Frequency Syndrome."

The National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse web site: "Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome."

AARP web site: "Overactive Bladder: How to Take Back Control."

Reviewed by Gary D. Vogin, MD, on July 9, 2009

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