What Are My Treatment Options?

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Joy Behar
When an overactive bladder is affecting your daily life, this might be just the time to look into treatment options. I'm Joy Behar. And I'm talking with an expert on OAB about how to solve this problem. So let's talk about medication. What type of medications can help this problem?

Those are the ones that you've seen commercials for on TV all the time. And what they do is they suppress the urges of the bladder to empty itself. They buy you time.

some side effects.

The most common with these medicines can be dry mouth, tiredness, and constipation, which is obviously something that you're replacing one unpleasantry with another. Usually by timing the medications properly, we can minimize the complications of people suffer from them.

they come in for help is let's try this if you'd like. And then you'll tell me whether your prior situation was better or whether the situation after the medicine is better.

How long before you actually can notice that it's getting better?

within anywhere from as few as three days to as many as seven days. Most of them will say about a two-week run before we can determine whether it's working or not.

Can you stop this medication at some point? Or is it just a life commitment?

because a lot of times by modifying their lifestyle a little bit-- by modifying stressors in their life, that will make the problem get better. Unfortunately, with this particular problem, once we go to medicines, the majority of people wind up staying on them for a long period of time. I really try to reserve the medicines for the people where those behavioral steps and exercises aren't helpful or they're just not helpful enough.

that can have an effect in this particular problem. A lot of them also-- it's interesting-- probably have a little bit of a placebo effect.

and I don't want to sound like an advertisement-- but people Botox every part of their body at this point. You can actually Botox the bladder in cases that are very severe. I'm not advocating that for garden variety issues. But we also have gene therapy on the horizon. We have these medicines that modulate the nervous system locally. And we have implantable devices that can somehow modulate the nervous system in the bladder.

Don't let OAB stop you. It can get better with treatment. Ask your doctor for help.