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Old 10-16-2003, 04:55 PM   #1
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Unhappy Urinary Urgency

I'm 57 and take no medications of any sort for menopause, due to my 30-year history of migraines. I get the night sweats, hot flashes, etc. for the past 3 years or so and hope someday my body will get used to all this.

The most frustrating thing is the urinary urgency I experience from time to time (read: most of the time).

1. Anybody else have this problem?
2. How do you tell if it's a real bladder infection if it just comes and goes? Does one get one's urine tested at the doctor's weekly? I just finished a round of Macrobid (made me sick!) and my culture now comes back clear, but the urgency never went away. Urine looks clear, is voluminous and doesn't hurt to pass.
3. I've had some version of this off-and-on for years when stress is bad, but now it seems to be my familiar friend due to menopause and I suppose the resulting dryness -- Wah!!! Long ago the urologist just said it's they way my body reacts to stress. Recently, the ob/gyn gave me pyridium for the symptoms, but I wonder: any cure? I take acidophilus regularly and use replens when I'm not having yeast overgrowth problems. As mentioned before, I'm poised to try the VagiFem tablets, but really don't want to court more headaches or endometrial cancer eventually.

Sorry to ramble, but I'd love to hear how others live with this problem.

Thank you very much everybody!
Paulie

 
Old 10-17-2003, 04:08 AM   #2
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if you havent already maybe you should see a urologist..good luck

 
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Old 10-17-2003, 06:16 AM   #3
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I have a problem with the urinary thing on and off but I'm not taking any more pills so I just use the pads once and awhile. I use them all the time if I have to so I don't have to take any more pill unless I have no other choice.

 
Old 10-17-2003, 06:48 AM   #4
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Yes, I also have this problem. I am your age, 56, and have been experiencing symptoms of menopause for the past 3 years. About 6 months ago, I started with the same problem as you. Thought that I had a urinary tract infection but antibiotics did not clear it up. Eventually went away in about 3 weeks. I read everything I could and thought that maybe I was having bladder spasms so I started some sort of bladder training in which I tried to hold my urine for about an hour and increased the time until I got to 3 hours. Each time these urgency feelings occur, I go back to the "bladder training" and take a couple of doses of Uristat and this seems to help until the next one. I have been trying to determine if these symptoms occur when I am stressed out. That's hard to do because I am usually more stressed with going through menopause. Anyway, to make a long story short, I do think the symptoms have to do with stress and bladder irritability ( one of the symptoms of menopause) and I hope that it goes away soon. Don't know if this helps. I hope that it does.

 
Old 10-17-2003, 09:56 AM   #5
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My gosh, you guys are a Godsend. I'm 51 and my periods completely stopped about two years ago...and my life has been a living hell ever since. Had my first ever UTI and have had the symptoms of one ever since. They'll go away for a couple of months then come right back again. I'll go and get ehcked for a UTI but everything comes back clear. I do suffer from atrophic vaginitis - I'm one of those lucky ones - and also have extreme dryness inside and out. As soon as I started going through menopause, I began to experience terrible itching on only one side of my labia which will drive me nuts if I don't put something on it to stop it. Does anyone else have this? At first I was very concerned about it as that isn't something I've ever been plagued with so naturally I was worried that I had a yeast infection, but no discharge and the doctor ruled out everything, and it was shortly after that when I read somewhere that dryness and itching are symptoms of menopause, especially if one also has atrophic vaginitis because the external dryness is simply caused by the vaginal dryness. I honestly thought there was something wrong with me that this would come and go like it did, but when I read that the itching is common, I did feel relieved. I do put a little Cortaid on it when it starts, and that seems to help tremendously. Now these urinary urges and irritations are a whole other ballgame. I had my first UTI three years ago when my periods started becoming sporadic, and ever since I've either had another UTI or just the symptoms of one with no bacteria. I always thought I would simply sail right through this menopause thing with no problems, and though I don't have the moodiness and such, I have more of the physical symptoms that are just so irritating and intrusive at times. I have a blood disorder and take a blood thinner so I can't take any kind of HRT, but not sure if I would anyway with everything that keeps popping up about it. But i gotta tell ya, if my doctor said there was something I could take with my blood that would stop or ease these symptoms I do have, I'm not at all sure I wouldn't give it a try.
And since I'm on here now, I do want to ask you guys - does Replens help with the vaginal dryness and maybe with the other symptoms? My doctor says it's wonderful stuff and has heard nothing but good things about it, and I did use it for awhile but not every day. Has anyone found this to help with their problems when used on a daily basis? Right about now, I'm sure all of us would grab just about anything we could get our hands on to feel the way we used to.

Thanks so much for any input....you guys are so helpful Take care.

 
Old 10-17-2003, 03:31 PM   #6
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I replied earlier today, but it never showed up so something must have been amiss. Thanks everyone for your input.

I have begun using Replens every other night or so. I tend to get a bit of yeast overgrowth for some reason when I use Replens a lot. Therefore, I alternate with an old Gyne-Lotrimin container full of plain yogurt some evenings, which seems to help keep the yeast at bay. I also take acidophilus. Another thing I find helpful is to carry a small container of Astroglide and apply it to the external tissues several times during the day.

It was so encouraging to hear from others who have the urgency problem. Caffeine seems to make it worse for me I notice. Too, I've backed off a little on my huge water intake today and tried to go longer between trips to the bathroom. This seems to help a lot -- thanks for the suggestion -- and kind of lines up with my feeling that my bladder was somehow in spasms. too many bathroom trips seem to keep it riled up! Sometimes the urgency seems to be connected to my irritable bowel when it is acting up. The whole urgency thing is better when I first wake up than when the day has taken its toll of stress. Perhaps tight jeans were contributing somehow, as well?

I've made appointments today for a new female ob/gyn and have also set up a trip to the urologist to make good and sure nothing is remiss with my bladder. I decided it was the only way I'd quit worrying to death about this. I'm hoping the new ob/gyn is not so militant about Vagifem and has some intermediate suggestions. I promise full reports.

Thanks so much, everybody!
Paulie

 
Old 10-18-2003, 07:34 AM   #7
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Hi Paulie. Hope everything goes well with your new doctors. Keep us posted.

 
Old 10-24-2003, 04:56 PM   #8
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Hi Gang,

I saw the urologist today and we have an answer -- at least in my case. It bears a complicated name which I left written down in my car; I can provide it later if anybody wants. Basically, the lower wall of my bladder is keeping the urine from flowing out peacefully into the sphincter area, hence I always have retained urine which makes me uncomfortable. The remedy is one pill a night for two months taken at bedtime. The pill is called Bachlofen, and the doctor says it is a very benign drug which takes some time to work -- I need to keep taking it.

So the *see the urologist* advice was great, and I'm glad I did it. The ob/gyn was kind of on the wrong track, insisting I needed to take vaginal hormones.

By the way, the urologist says I've probably had the problem for awhile, it just gets worse with menopause. Gee, what a surprise.... :-)

Paulie

 
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