When you think of Botox injections, you probably think of getting rid of unwanted wrinkles around the eyes or forehead. But recently the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved using the injections for something else: Overactive bladder.
Botox can now be used to help patients with neurological conditions who suffer from severe incontinence.
“It can really be life changing for someone with severe incontinence issues,” said UC San Diego Dr. Charles Nager, who works at the Women’s Pelvic Medicine Center.
Overactive bladder is the seventh condition, including chronic migraines and underarm sweating, that Botox has been approved to treat since the drug first arrived on the market as a wrinkle reducer in 2002.
How does it work? Botox injections paralyze the bladder muscle to prevent contractions that cause urgency to urinate or leak.
Although medications and behavioral modifications are treatment options, many patients do not respond to these methods and need a more aggressive approach, according to UCSD researchers.