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Is there a link between overactive bladder and menopause?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Overactive bladder often develops when a women enters menopause. This is when the body does not make as much estrogen. This female hormone may play a part in urinary health. It is thought that estrogen helps to keep the lining of both the bladder and urethra healthy. The lack of estrogen may cause the bladder control muscles to weaken. Many menopausal women experience stress incontinence. This is urine leaking due to movement or pressure, such as from exercising or coughing. Studies suggest that taking estrogen will not improve bladder control. But pelvic exercise may help improve bladder control. Women may also want to take medication. Women going through menopause who have symptoms of overactive bladder should visit their doctor for an exam.
Ja-Hong Kim, MD
Urology
There is a definite link between overactive bladder and menopause. The hormone receptors for women are found in the vaginal area and urinary tract. As the levels of hormones decrease during menopause, the tissues atrophy. However, not all menopausal women have overactive bladder.
 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.