Urinary Urgency: Symptoms & Signs

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Urinary urgency is the sudden urge to urinate, due to involuntary contractions of the bladder muscle. Urinary urgency is one of the hallmark symptoms of urinary tract infection (UTI) and can be related to other conditions as well. Certain medications, like diuretics, can also cause urinary urgency. Damage to the nerves that control the bladder or conditions like overactive bladder are characterized by urinary urgency. Urinary urgency is related to and often accompanied by urinary frequency, the need to urinate frequently. The two symptoms are sometimes confused with each other. For example, people with uncontrolled diabetes often experience the need to urinate frequently and may describe feeling urinary urgency as a result.

REFERENCE:

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/10/2017

Subscribe to MedicineNet's Women's Health Newsletter

By clicking "Submit," I agree to the MedicineNet Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy. I also agree to receive emails from MedicineNet and I understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet subscriptions at any time.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors