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Elmiron and Enablex

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Old 06-27-2009, 10:28 PM   #1
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Elmiron and Enablex

I am 65yr old and for decades I have had typical stress incontinence coupled with frequent trips to the bathroom. I do have some bladder prolapse that I can elect to get surgery for.

Over the last two years I have had a greatly increased problems. I have had several infections both Strep and E-coli but I also have periods of severe frequency with no infection. I no longer pass urine in the quantities that I did even a few years ago.

The frequency has been terrible with burning urethra and many trips to the bathroom during the night and day. When this is flaring up it makes travelling a nightmare.

I finally had an ultrasound done. I had to drink 40 oz of water and the pain in my urethra was so bad I was unable to sit down. The result was it showed a significant amount of urine remaining in my bladder after voiding. Funny thing is I actually improved after the ultrasound and I thought it was perhaps because my bladder had been flushed out by all the water. I was actually thinking of drinking the 40 oz of water periodically to see if that kept my symptoms at bay.

Then I was referred to an Urologist. He put me on Enablex and told me that he might prescribe Elmiron after cystoscopy. After the cystoscopy he told me there was inflammation of my bladder and this was something that was difficult to treat. He then prescribed Elmiron and told me I was to see him in 90 days to see if there was improvement.

Trouble is between the Elmiron and the Enablex the cost is nearly $1000 Cnd for the three months. I have to pay for this myself. I will suck it up and pay for it for the three months but unless I have dramatic improvement I will not continue to take the Elmiron which is the most expensive of the two drugs.

I got discouraged when I read that it's success rate was not much more than a placebo. This is one expensive placebo. It seems the only thing that Elmiron is prescribed for is Interstitial Cystitis. Can he really make that diagnosis based on my symptoms and the Cystoscopy showing inflammation. Have any of you had a similar experience and was the Elmiron successful? Thank you for any information.
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Old 06-28-2009, 11:33 AM   #2
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Re: Elmiron and Enablex


I've never taken Elmiron or Enablex. However, after doing some research, I've found out that with many people, Elmiron can take up to 6 months to kick in - that's if it kicks in at all. For some, it may not. It also has a most debilitating side effect - hair loss. I've not heard of Enablex, but I'm sure you could get more info by just going to a search engine and typing ''side effects from Enablex.'' I believe that Elmiron can also be given via ''instillations'', rather than orally.


Old 06-28-2009, 11:41 AM   #3
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Re: Elmiron and Enablex

I am taking Elmiron and it takes a long time to see any results, but it does help a little. If you have Blue Cross, you can use Medco, a mail order site and save lots of money - it costs me 65.00 for 3 months supply. Check it out. Also, check your diet for any acidic foods, which really inflame the bladder. Check out IC and see what appeals to you


Old 06-28-2009, 03:14 PM   #4
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Re: Elmiron and Enablex

Lenny I am a Canadian Senior and most common drugs are paid for but not these two.
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Old 07-01-2009, 09:54 AM   #5
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Re: Elmiron and Enablex

Hi Pooby,

I have been taking Elmiron for almost a year and it has really helped me. I take it orally and also via bladder instillations. The instillations are a wonderful way to begin treating bladder inflammation. You should take Elmiron for at least a year in order to give it a chance to build up in your system and offer relief. Also, don't let people scare you by talking about the side-effects. In general, Elmiron is a well tolerated drug. Most people have absolutely no side effects. I never had any! The most common side effect is gastro-intestinal trouble. But, many find that if you open the capsule and empty the contents into a small glass of water that the gastro problems will go away (it's the capsule that causes them). I had absolutely no hair loss on Elmiron. It's a very rare side-effect.

My advice to you would be to talk to your doctor about Elmiron instillations. My uro mixes the contents of 2 Elmiron capsules with Sodium Bicarbonate, Sterile Water, and Lidocaine. This mixture is put into my bladder via a catheter. I hold it in for two hours and then pee it out. After about 4 or 5 treatments I really started to feel better and it's only gotten better as time goes on. Now, a year after my diagnosis I feel wonderful almost all of the time!

Good luck!

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