I normally perform intermittent catheters and have recently started leaking in between. What should I do?
Check if you have a UTI
- Head to your GP and have a urine specimen taken.
- If your urine comes back positive, your GP should prescribe you with antibiotics that the bug is sensitive to.
- Once you have treated the UTI the urine leakage should stop.
- If once you have stopped the antibiotics you are still leaking in between, then get a urine test to ensure that the bug is no longer there.
Check if you have a full bladder
- Does it occur at the same time each day?
- Is it usually before you are due for a catheter?
- Do you find if you do a catheter after you leak, you drain a larger than normal amount?
- This could be because your bladder is too full.
- Fill out a bladder diary to see if you can add an extra catheter to stop the leaking, or decrease your fluid intake to help manage.
- Contact your spinal urology nurse to help talk you through the steps.
Check if you have a loaded bowel
- Have your bowels been opening regularly?
- Contact the spinal outpatient nurse to talk about the best ways to assist you to empty your bowel.
Check if you have an overactive bladder
- Sometimes it takes a while for the bladder reflexes to come back after a spinal cord injury. This is called an overactive bladder and causes you to leak frequently.
- If you have ruled out a UTI and your bowel being loaded, contact the spinal urology nurse, or get a referral from your GP to see a urologist to discuss.
Check if you have a weak sphincter
- Does it occur when you are more mobile i.e. transfers from chair to car?
- Does it occur when you sneeze?
- Does it occur more frequently when your bladder is full?
This can sometimes be a tricky one to fix, but there are options available. Contact the spinal urology nurse to chat further.