What You Should Know About Overactive BladderLet's talk about it.
Angie always assumed her frequent trips to the restroom to pee were normal. It wasn't until she hit her 20s and started working in an office with other women that she started to question whether the frequent need to urinate was, in fact, the norm.
“I noticed they didn't use the restroom as often as I did,” says Angie, a yoga teacher who lives in Las Vegas with her husband and two kids. “When we'd go to lunch, I'd have to get up two to three times and they never did. I'd say, 'Anyone else need to go?' When they'd say no, I'd think, 'Man they're lucky.'”
She tried to manage through lifestyle tweaks. She did Kegel exercises, the exercise that strengthens the pelvic floor muscles to help control the bladder. She limited caffeine. And she tried to plan her trips to the bathroom ahead of time. All of these helped, but not enough.
On road trips, she'd give her husband 15-minute warnings. “I'd say, 'Okay, we need to find a bathroom in 15 minutes.' And when we got to 10 minutes, I'd say, 'Are you looking for a bathroom because I have 10 minutes.' At five minutes, I'd start panicking,” she says. “If he went past the time limit, I'd be Kegel-ing, breathing, chanting—I might be swearing a little bit internally—but when I had to go, I had to go.”
About eight years ago, Angie learned about a condition called overactive bladder (OAB) that sounded a lot like what she was experiencing. People with OAB have frequent and sudden urges to urinate that may be difficult to control; they also experience unintentional loss of urine.
“I started putting two and two together, and realized what I thought was normal wasn't,” she says. “I finally talked to my doctor and was diagnosed with OAB.”
Angie's story sounds familiar to Diane Newman, Adjunct Professor of Urology in Surgery at the Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia.
“Many women get into a habit of changing their routine and may find that a significant portion of their day revolves around bathroom mapping,” Newman says. “Women may deal with OAB symptoms for years without speaking to a health care provider since they just don't know how to bring it up, or they think it's a normal part of aging.”
That was Angie.
More than a decade after that first office job, Angie was diagnosed with overactive bladder. Her doctor prescribed a treatment called Myrbetriq® (mirabegron) — a prescription medicine for adults used to treat overactive bladder symptoms of urgency, frequency and leakage.
Since she began taking Myrbetriq, Angie's bathroom trips have decreased. “I'm so glad I finally brought it up with my doctor,” says Angie, now 49. “Now I don't have to plan my day around bathroom visits.”
This article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always talk with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. This article is sponsored by Astellas.
Use of Myrbetriq
Myrbetriq® (mirabegron) is a prescription medicine for adults used to treat overactive bladder (OAB) with symptoms of urgency, frequency and leakage.
Important Safety Information
Myrbetriq is not for everyone. Do not take Myrbetriq if you have an allergy to mirabegron or any ingredients in Myrbetriq. Myrbetriq may cause your blood pressure to increase or make your blood pressure worse if you have a history of high blood pressure. It is recommended that your doctor check your blood pressure while you are taking Myrbetriq. Myrbetriq may increase your chances of not being able to empty your bladder. Tell your doctor right away if you have trouble emptying your bladder or you have a weak urine stream.
Myrbetriq may cause allergic reactions that may be serious. If you experience swelling of the face, lips, throat or tongue, with or without difficulty breathing, stop taking Myrbetriq and tell your doctor right away.
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including medications for overactive bladder or other medicines such as thioridazine (Mellaril™ and Mellaril-S™), flecainide (Tambocor®), propafenone (Rythmol®), digoxin (Lanoxin®) or solifenacin succinate (VESIcare®). Myrbetriq may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how Myrbetriq works.
Before taking Myrbetriq, tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney problems. The most common side effects of Myrbetriq include increased blood pressure, common cold symptoms (nasopharyngitis), dry mouth, flu symptoms, urinary tract infection, back pain, dizziness, joint pain, headache, constipation, sinus irritation, and inflammation of the bladder (cystitis).
For further information, please talk to your healthcare professional and see accompanying Patient Product Information and complete Prescribing Information for Myrbetriq® (mirabegron).
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call .