Your bladder is where urine is stored until you're ready to urinate (pee). "Neuro-" refers to nerves or the nervous system (brain and spinal cord), and "-genic" means produced or caused by.
Neurogenic bladder is lack of bladder control caused by problems with the nerves that go to your bladder.
Some nerve problems keep your bladder muscles from contracting normally. Then your bladder fills up with urine and you leak urine. When you urinate, your bladder doesn't empty all the way.
Other nerve problems make your bladder muscles contract too much or at the wrong time. Then you may urinate too often and urinate when you don't want to.
The main symptom is inability to control when you urinate (incontinence). With neurogenic bladder you may constantly pass small amounts of urine.
Other symptoms include:
Needing to urinate often and urgently, including at night
In men, erectile dysfunction
Neurogenic bladder increases your risk of:
Doctors suspect neurogenic bladder if you're having problems controlling urination. They'll use ultrasound or a catheter to measure how much urine is still in your bladder after you urinate. Doctors also do tests such as:
Ultrasound of your urinary tract to look for kidney damage
Blood tests to check kidney function
If it looks like you have neurogenic bladder, doctors may then do more specialized bladder tests.
If your bladder fills up and won't empty properly, doctors will have you:
The catheter lets urine drain all the way. You use the catheter before your bladder fills up so much that you leak urine. Doctors prefer not to leave a catheter in all the time. It's better to put it in and then take it right out after the urine drains.
If your bladder contracts at the wrong times, doctors may use:
Doctors will have you drink plenty of fluids during the day, so you don't get kidney stones.
They'll check to make sure your kidneys are working well.