Normally, muscles around the bladder contract and relax according to the volume of urine in the bladder and the initiation of urination. In people with overactive bladders, the detrusor muscle contracts spastically, sometimes without a known cause, which results in sustained, high bladder pressure.
People with the condition typically experience the urgent need to urinate at inconvenient times and may lose control before reaching a toilet. Overactive bladder interferes with work, daily routine, and intimacy; causes embarrassment; and may diminish self-esteem and quality of life.
Overactive bladder affects men and women equally. Approximately 20 million people in the United States suffer from the condition. Though it is not necessarily a part of aging, it most often affects older people.
The treatment for overactive bladder depends on the capabilities of the patient. Commonly recommended treatments include pelvic muscle rehabilitation, specific exercises, electrical stimulation, behavioral therapy or mediciations.