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Overactive Bladder (OAB)

Overactive bladder (OAB), a condition that affects millions of Americans, causes a sudden urge to urinate, whether the bladder is full or not. The frequent visits to the restroom – both day and night – can be embarrassing and disrupt your everyday activities.

What are Symptoms of OAB?

The most common symptom of OAB is the sudden uncontrollable urge to urinate. The urge may be difficult to stop and may lead to the involuntary loss of urine (urge incontinence). Other possible symptoms include urinating eight or more times within 24 hours, as well as waking from sleep to urinate two or more times. 

How is OAB Diagnosed?

Discuss your symptoms with a trained urologist. We’ll perform a physical exam, take some tests and ask you a number of questions to better understand your current situation and medical history. This will include information about:

  • How long you’ve had OAB symptoms
  • How the symptoms are disrupting your life
  • Your past and current health problems
  • Any over-the-counter and/or prescription drugs
  • Your diet, such as daily liquids intake

In women, the physical exam likely includes your abdomen, the organs in your pelvis and your rectum. In men, it includes your abdomen, prostate and rectum. Other tests include:

  • Urine culture: Urine test to check for infection or blood
  • Bladder scan: Ultrasound to see how much urine is left in the bladder after emptying
  • Cystoscopy: A narrow tube with tiny lens that’s inserted into the bladder to rule out other causes of symptoms
  • Urodynamic testing: Checks how well your lower urinary tract stores and releases urine

We also may request that you keep a bladder diary, noting how often you use the bathroom, as well as leak urine. It will help us learn more about your day-to-day symptoms.


Options to Request an Appointment

If your situation is an emergency, call 911.