When To Talk With Your Doctor
Botox can cause side effects in some people. Most mild side effects of Botox go away with time and dont require medical attention.
Side effects can vary based on the condition youre using Botox to treat. Some of the more common mild side effects include:
- injection site reactions, such as pain or redness
Quality Of Life And Patient Satisfaction Scores
The early studies evaluated quality of life using the Urinary Distress Inventory 6 and Incontinence Impact Questionnaire . Dowson and colleagues and Game and colleagues have shown a consistent improvement in both scores following up to five injections .
Recent studies have included global satisfaction scores and alternative questionnaires such as the International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire Short Form , Incontinence Quality of Life questionnaire and Treatment Benefit Scale . These show that high quality of life scores and satisfaction rates, up to 90%, are consistent across treatment cycles.
How Often Will I Get Botox Injections
How often you receive Botox injections may vary. Youll need to track the symptoms of your bladder condition so that your doctor can determine how often you need the injections.
The minimum period between injections is 12 weeks, but in some cases, people feel the effects of Botox for longer periods. This means that they may need injections less often.
If you have questions about how often youll need to get Botox injections for your condition, talk with your doctor.
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What Are The Risks With Bladder Botox
The most common risk associated with Botox injections into the bladder is development of urinary tract infection. There may be several reasons for this risk. Simply putting a cystoscope into the bladder to perform the injection is a risk of a urinary tract infection. Botox can also make it more difficult to empty your bladder which increases the chances of developing a UTI. So, an antibiotic is prescribed for you to take for the few days after your Botox treatment, to try to reduce this risk.
Because of the way in which Botox affects the nerves of the bladder, trouble urinating and emptying the bladder is another possible risk. This risk is probably related to the amount of Botox injected and lower doses of Botox should result in lower rates of emptying problems. This is the main reason why most people begin with 100 units of Botox to treat Overactive Bladder. Trouble urinating and emptying your bladder can become so severe that some people may even need to use a catheter to empty. this effect wears off over time.
Botox For Spinal Cord Injury: Should You Try It
Its important to understand that Botox will not magically get rid of your pain, bladder problems, excessive sweating, or spasticity.
However, it can help significantly reduce them, which can provide a lot of relief and allow you to focus on your rehabilitation.
Botox is a temporary treatment, and while you can continue to get injections when its effects wear off, it is possible to build a resistance to the drug if it is taken too frequently. Therefore, Botox should not be solely relied upon for managing spinal cord injury complications.
Hopefully, this article helped you understand how you can use Botox to manage spinal cord injury complications. Good luck!
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Give Your Skin A Break
Skin treatments that target the same areas as your Botox can dislodge the injections before they set into your muscles. You should try to avoid facials, exfoliating scrubs, dermal fillers, and similar procedures for at least 24 hours. Dont worry, itll give people more of a chance to notice and appreciate your Botox.
What To Expect After A Botox Injection In The Bladder
After your doctor finishes administering Botox in your bladder, they will monitor you in the office for about 30 minutes. You will be asked to empty your bladder before leaving the office and your doctor will check that no extra urine is retained when you use the restroom. Your doctor may prescribe 1-3 days of antibiotic pills to make sure you dont get an infection.
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Injection Of Botox Into The Bladder
Botulinum toxin is a naturally occurring toxin produced by some bacteria. The toxin causes muscle paralysis. Small quantities of Botox can be injected into selected muscles to reduce the side effects caused by unwanted or excessive muscle contraction.
The bladder muscle can be unnecessarily ‘overactive’ in some patients. This is usually manifest by frequency and urgency of urination and sometimes urinary incontinence. Patients with neurological abnormalities such as spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis may experience similar symptoms. If treatment with anticholinergic tablets such as Oxybutynin or Solifenacin do not provide adequate relief then injection of Botox into the bladder may be recommended. Botox is injected via a telescope, usually under a general anaesthetic. The effect usually takes several weeks to become noticeable and may last for up to 12 months. Following this further Botox may be required. The dose of Botox varies between 100units and 300units and depends upon the indication and previous response to Botox.
Side Effects Of Botox In The Bladder
Botox treatments are typically very well-tolerated. The day after the treatment, you may experience some burning with urination, or see a small amount of blood in the urine. The most common side effect of using Botox for overactive bladder is a urinary tract infection. About four to eight percent of patients will be unable to empty their bladder and need to use a small catheter to empty their bladders throughout the day, until the medicine wears off and urination resumes.
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How Does Botox Work For Incontinence
The drug decreases the spasms that cause overactive bladder symptoms, Dr. Vasavada explains. Its not so much for frequency of urination, as much as that sudden urge to go. Its good to help people when its something they cant postpone without leakage occurring.
The outpatient or office-based procedure to deliver the drug involves using a little numbing medicine, followed by a 15-minute, short series of small injections into the wall of the bladder.
The drug, which typically takes about a week to begin to work, chemically affects muscle-nerve connections. Thats why Botox can also be used to treat other disorders, including chronic migraine and severe underarm sweating.
What Are Botoxs Mild Side Effects
The mild side effects of Botox can vary depending on the condition its being used to treat. Some side effects also differ between adults and children using the drug.
Mild side effects reported in people using Botox for overactive bladder symptoms include:
- trouble urinating, or pain or discomfort while urinating
- urinary retention
Mild side effects reported in people using Botox for detrusor overactivity* linked with a neurological condition include:
- urinary retention
Mild side effects reported in children using Botox for detrusor overactivity linked with a neurological condition include:
- bacteria in the urine
- leukocytes in the urine
In many cases, mild side effects from the drug can be temporary. Some side effects may be easy to manage, too. But if side effects last for a longer time, or if they bother you or become severe, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
* This refers to overactivity of the detrusor muscle, which is the muscle that lines the bladder.
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Upper Respiratory Tract Infection
Upper respiratory tract infection is a common side effect of Botox. The common cold is an example of this type of infection. In people taking Botox, these infections are usually mild.
Symptoms of an upper respiratory tract infection may include:
This side effect was more common among people taking Botox to treat:
What you can do
If you have symptoms of an upper respiratory tract infection, call your doctor. They can recommend ways to treat this side effect. It isnt likely that youll need to stop taking Botox due to this side effect.
Comparing Bladder Botox To Similar Treatments
Botox can have multiple benefits for overactive bladder or incontinence. This can be the ideal treatment for people of all ages. For older patients, this may be preferable to surgery since it will take less of a toll on the body.
Botox injections for the bladder are comparable in cost with most insurance coverages for oral medications, InterStim or percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation .
Below we highlight the pros and cons of Botox compared to other treatment options.
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Botox For Overactive Bladder Urgency Incontinence And Neurogenic Lower Urinary Tract Dysfunction:
Botox injection into the bladder is a well-established treatment for overactive bladder and urgency incontinence, including urgency incontinence associated with neurological disease. It is usually used when behavioral and exercise therapies and medications have not been effective in treating symptoms. Botox has been shown to produce dramatic improvements in symptoms and quality of life in women who have not responded to or could not tolerated other treatments. At the Center for Women’s Pelvic Health at UCLA, our physicians did some of the pioneering work on use of Botox for overactive bladder and incontinence over the past 15 years. In most cases Botox can be done in an office setting with local anesthesia instilled into the bladder.
More Common Side Effects Of Botox
Botox can cause certain side effects, some of which are more common than others. These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days or weeks. But if the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
These are just a few of the more common side effects reported by people who took Botox in clinical studies. These side effects can vary depending on which condition the drug is being used to treat.
More common side effects in people taking Botox for overactive bladder include:
- upper respiratory tract infection
More common side effects in people taking Botox for strabismus include:
More common side effects in people taking Botox for urinary incontinence caused by a neurological disorder include:
More common side effects in people taking Botox for blepharospasm associated with dystonia include:
- drooping eyelids
- eye inflammation
More common side effects in adults taking Botox for spasticity of the bladder include:
- pain in the extremities, such as hands or feet
More common side effects in children taking Botox for spasticity of the bladder include:
- upper respiratory tract infection
More common side effects in people taking Botox for chronic migraine include:
- neck pain
For more information about the conditions that Botox can be used to treat, see this article.
What Are The Risks Of Botox
Botox acts to decrease the strength of the bladders natural contraction. It eliminates bladder spasm by this method. One potential side effect of this is urinary retention. In other words the Botox works to well and patients cannot void on their own, or they have some residual urine in their bladder that does not pass with normal urination. Some residual urine does not cause much problem, but if this residual urine is high, or a patient cannot void a catheter has to be placed or a patient has to peridocially pass a catheter in order to drain their bladder. This complication is rare in patients with overactive bladder, because we limit the amount of Botox we inject.
In patients with neurogenic bladder from conditions like multiple sclerosis or spinal cord injury we use much more Botox than in a patient with overactive bladder. The reason for this is patients with neurogenic bladder often are dependant upon catheterization to start with. In these patients the goal is to inject enough Botox so the bladder does not contract at all. This will eliminate leakage from bladder spasms and patients often are dry in between catheterizations.
There have been very few instances of Botox ever causing systemic weakness. This is a risk of Botox therapy, but extremely uncommon.
What To Expect During Botox Bladder Treatment
During a bladder treatment, the Botox is injected directly into the muscle of the bladder using a thin telescopic lighted camera that goes through the urethra, which is the tube you pee out of. This procedure can be done in the office and does not require a trip to the operating room, an IV, sedation, or any time off work and/or hobbies to recover. The treatment takes about five minutes to do, but you will likely be at the doctors office for about an hour in total.
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What The Treatment Involves:
Botox injection treatment is administered in the office under local anesthesia. Local anesthetic is placed via a catheter and allowed to remain in the bladder for 20-30 minutes to provide numbing of the lining of the bladder. After 20-30 minutes, a small scope which is connected to a camera is placed into your bladder through the urethra and a series of injections of Botox solution are done into the muscle of the bladder using a small needle that is passed through the scope. The actual injection procedure takes about 5 minutes or less.
What Are Botox Bladder Treatment Risks And Side Effects
As with any medical procedure, there are some potential risks and temporary side effects. There is some risk of damage caused by passing the scope through the urethra to the bladder. There is also a risk of urinary tract infection and not being able to empty the bladder completely. Patients with difficulty emptying their bladders may need a catheter for urination for a short time period after the procedure. Patients may experience some pain or discomfort with urination for the first few days and there may be some blood in the urine. There is a very minor risk of blood clotting.
In clinical trials, only 6.5 percent of patients treated with Botox for incontinence needed to use a catheter after treatment.1
As with any Botox procedure, there is also a minor concern about the Botox spreading beyond the treated area and affecting other parts of the body. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of Botox for incontinence and help you decide whether this is an appropriate treatment option for you.
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Could Botox Cause Any Side Effects That Affect My Brain
No, Botox isnt known to cause side effects that affect or damage the brain.
The toxin effects of Botox can sometimes spread from the area where the injections are given,* causing a condition called botulism. This condition involves widespread problems with the way nerves communicate with muscles. But this doesnt affect the brain.
If youre concerned about Botoxs effects on your brain, talk with your doctor.
Learn more about some of the side effects Botox may cause.
Alcohol Use With Botox
There arent any known interactions between getting Botox injections and drinking alcohol.
Keep in mind that drinking alcohol could cause your risk for certain side effects of Botox to be higher, including:
If you drink alcohol, talk with your doctor about how much is safe for you to drink during Botox treatment.
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Botox For Overactive Bladder
Approved new use
Botox isnt just for wrinkles anymore. In 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded the use of Botox to include the treatment of overactive bladder .
Overactive bladder isnt a disease, but rather a group of symptoms related to the function of your bladder. If you arent sure whether you have OAB, ask yourself these questions:
- Do I often experience an urgent need to urinate right away?
- Do I need to urinate at least eight times during the day, or more than twice at night?
- Do I frequently leak urine?
If you answer yes to at least two of these questions, then you may have OAB.
How Is Botox Given
To treat bladder conditions, Botox is given as an injection into the detrusor muscle .
At each injection appointment, adults with OAB symptoms or children with detrusor overactivity will receive a Botox injection in 20 sites, located 1 centimeter apart in the detrusor muscle.
Adults with detrusor overactivity will receive a higher dose of Botox, which is injected in 30 sites, located 1 cm apart in the detrusor muscle.
In some cases, your doctor may inject a medication before your Botox injection to help with pain.
Your doctor will monitor you for at least 30 minutes after each Botox injection. If youre using Botox to treat OAB symptoms, youll need to show that you can urinate before leaving your doctors office.
If you have questions about what to expect at your injection appointments, talk with your doctor.
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How To Use Botox For Long
Botox is a temporary treatment that does not target the underlying nerve damage responsible for complications of spinal cord injury. As a result, individuals must continuously get Botox injections to maintain its effects.
One way to maximize the effects of Botox to promote more long-term benefits is to take advantage of reduced spasticity and participate in an intensive physical and occupational therapy program to improve motor control. When Botox is administered for the purpose of reducing spasticity, the muscles can become more relaxed, allowing for the individual to gain the range of motion necessary to participate in more of the exercises that physical and occupational therapists would provide.
This is possible because the spinal cord can utilize neuroplasticity to regain functions affected by injury. One of the best ways to promote neuroplasticity is through repetitive practice, which reinforces demand for those specific functions.
In an intensive therapy program, individuals are challenged to practice high repetitions of task-specific exercises. This consistent stimulation helps encourage neuroadaptive changes in healthy and undamaged parts of the spinal cord for long-term results.