Nerve functionality of the bladder is disturbed in 90% of Spina Bifida cases, because neural impulses cannot reach their destination in a normal way. The impaired signals also lead to muscular deficiency with paralysis and reduced mobility, numbness, poor circulation in the legs and a higher risk of bone fracture. Many people become confined to wheelchairs and can develop dislocated hip joints and misaligned legs and back.
If the spinal cord damage is partial, you experience a certain loss of the ability to control your muscles, but some signals will still go through. This allows for the possibility of clean intermittent catheterization (CIC) for emptying the bladder, which can be a good solution for a longer, healthier and more independent life.
It's only recently that health care providers have begun to notice the connection between bladder and bowel dysfunction. The impact is huge for people with neurogenic diseases. In a lot of cases, bladder and bowel symptoms coexist, side by side and interact. So it's time for a more holistic approach for the benefit of patients.
But there are challenges to overcome - for both the patient and the healthcare provider. Better care and a better quality of life are possible when bladder and bowel are treated together.
We've collected testimonies from those with bladder and bowel dysfunction related to their neurogenic diagnosis, who's lives have been improved and we explore the therapies that help to improve quality of life so that both patient and professional can reach for a better quality of life.
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