Bladder installation

A bladder installation is inserted into the bladder to manage many different health issues.

What is a bladder installation?

A bladder installation is inserted into the bladder to manage many different health issues. Often referred to as a “wash” or a “bath”, the installation is inserted via a catheter tube. The solution stays in the bladder for a short period of time and is then released.

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Am I a good candidate for this treatment?

This treatment is usually recommended if you have a condition called interstitial cystitis (IC). This chronic condition causes the bladder and/or urethra to become inflamed. It is caused by nerves miscommunicating with the brain and has similar symptoms to a urinary tract infection (UTI). You might also be a suitable candidate if you have a chronic UTI that hasn’t been cured by typical means such as antibiotics, or other conditions that impact on your bladder’s function.

You will need to have a series of treatments – typically one every week or fortnight for around six to eight weeks.

How does this treatment work?

When you have a bladder installation, a catheter is inserted through the urethra and into the bladder. The health professional will insert the solution – or wash – through the tube and will leave it to sit in the bladder for around 15 minutes. The solution will then be drained out of the bladder. Most bladder installation washes are performed by trained urologists, but it is possible to do it yourself at home following the relevant training.

There is only one solution that is approved for this treatment – that is called DMSO. This solution is effective as it increases the capacity of the bladder while relaxing the pelvic muscles. This anti-inflammatory solution also sits in the tissue and soothes away any discomfort.


The recovery

There is little downtime required after having a bladder installation or bath. Therefore, it is an ideal treatment if you are in need of a different option to those you have already tried. You may need to take it easy for a few hours after receiving these treatments, as you may feel a very slight discomfort.

The procedure is unlikely to result in any side effects. Therefore, it doesn’t require any aftercare. The main side effect that patients note is a garlic type smell in the few days following treatment. This is nothing to worry about and should subside fairly quickly. Sometimes, a urogynaecologist may add medicines such as Herapin to your bladder bath. This can cause some side effects after use, but again this is rare. Drink lots of water after treatment, as with any medication, and ensure that you stay hydrated.


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