4 Ways to Treat Urine Retention

1. Catheterize the Bladder to Relieve Acute Retention

Urine retention may be caused by an obstruction in your urinary tract, by nerve problems interfering with the signals sent between your brain and bladder, or by a weak bladder muscle. Whatever the underlying cause, when urine retention becomes acute to the point that your bladder is distended, it is necessary to relieve the pressure immediately before permanent bladder damage is sustained. In such instances, a health care professional will need to insert a catheter through your urethra to drain your bladder.

2. Surgery Lifts the Fallen Bladder or Rectum

If you have a fallen bladder (cystocele) or rectum (rectocele), this may block your bladder, trapping urine inside. To repair the cystocele or rectocele, a surgeon may need to make an incision in the wall of your vagina in order to find the defect. The surgeon can then place sutures in the vaginal wall (fascia) to close up the defect, which will tighten the layers of tissue that separate the bladder from the vagina, supporting the pelvic organs and allowing your bladder to remain in its proper place and resume its proper function.

3. Treating Urethral Strictures in Men

Urethral strictures may occur in men when their urethras narrow due to scarring after infection or trauma to the penis. This stricture can be relieved by dilating your urethra using tubes or a small balloon or by an internal urethrotomy, in which a knife or laser is used to make an incision that opens the stricture. Yet another method of treatment involves the placing of a wire-mesh tube, called a stent, to keep your urethral passage open.

4. Treat Urine Retention Due to Prostate Enlargement

Benign prostatic hypertrophy or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a common occurrence as men get older and their prostate glands enlarge. The layer of tissue surrounding your prostate will prevent it from expanding, so it will instead press against your urethra. This causes your bladder wall to become thick and irritable enough that it contracts even when it contains only a small amount of urine. This will cause your bladder to weaken, so that it eventually loses the ability to empty itself, resulting in urine retention. There are many methods used to treat BPH, ranging from medications like finasteride, terazosin, doxazosin and tamsulosin to nonsurgical methods like transurethral microwave procedures and transurethral needle ablation. Transurethral, open and laser surgery may also be used. All of these methods of reducing prostate enlargement will also treat the urine retention that is found with this condition.