If you have Overactive Bladder or symptoms of urge and urgency, you may wish to consider surgery if your symptoms have not sufficiently improved after you have tried other more conservative treatments. Every person is different, and a surgeon will be able to discuss with you what exactly is causing your problem, and how surgery may help. Whatever your particular condition, it is important to really think through the pros and cons of having surgery.
If your doctor or nurse refers you to see a surgeon, then this is an ideal time to ask lots of questions. Ask your doctor as many questions as you want, and never be afraid to go back or telephone to get more information or a clearer explanation. Before meeting the surgeon it may help to note down your questions on a piece of paper, so you don’t forget what you wanted to ask. Make sure you write down the answers you are given; it’s easy to come out of a consultation and forget what has been said.
At any stage of the process if you are not clear about anything the doctor or surgeon says, ask them to explain again, a bit slower this time. The surgeon can also explain why they consider one operation particularly suitable for you.
This is a major operation indicated for Overactive Bladder and the symptoms of urge and urgency. It involves removing part or all of the outer muscle layer that surrounds the bladder. This aims to reduce the amount and strength of bladder contractions.
The operation usually takes 1 to 2 hours. After the operation a catheter is put in place. This is left in place for up to 7 to 10 days to keep the bladder empty while it heals.
The average time needed in hospital after the operation is 10 days, but complete recovery can take 3 to 4 months. Just over half of all people who have this operation are cured, and around two thirds are improved.
The operation can cause extra problems, including:
- The need to use a catheter – sometimes as a result of the operation the bladder cannot contract strongly enough to push out all of the urine. Many people who have this operation do have to use catheters permanently. However, it is suggested that catheters are required less after this procedure when compared with other surgery for Overactive bladder symptoms. E.g. cystoplasty
This is a fairly new operation, so we do not know about its success and problems in the long term. If you would like more information about this procedure please make an appointment with your GP who can discuss your options with you.