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Bladder dysfunction in peripheral neuropathies



Normal bladder function depends on the complex interaction of sensory and motor pathways. Bladder dysfunction can develop as a result of several neurological conditions. It can happen in a number of ways, including diabetic cystopathy, detrusor overactivity, bladder outlet obstruction, and urge and stress urinary incontinence. Diabetic neuropathy is the most common cause of peripheral neuropathy–associated bladder dysfunction. Guillain–Barré syndrome (GBS), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-associated neuropathy, chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), and amyloid neuropathy are other major causes. The diagnosis of bladder dysfunction should be established by the history of neurological symptoms, neurological examination, and urological evaluation. Functional evaluation of the lower urinary tract includes cystometry, sphincter electromyography, uroflowmetry, and urethral pressure profilometry. Management of urinary symptoms in patients with bladder dysfunction is usually supportive. In some cases, alpha-blocker and/or anti-muscarinic agents are needed to help improve urinary dysfunction. Intermittent self-catheterization is needed occasionally for patients with slow and/or poor recovery. Muscle Nerve 45: 2–8, 2012

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