Urinary retention is a lack of ability to urinate. It is a common complication of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), although it can also be caused by nerve dysfunction, infection, prostate cancer, or medications. Diagnosis and/or treatment may require use of a catheter. With acute retention you can’t urinate at all. It is a medical emergency, as the bladder may distend (stretch) to enormous sizes. If the bladder distends enough it will cause severe pain.
Our medical staff will start by taking a detailed medical history and performing a physical exam. This evaluation may include the following:
- Urine Culture & Sensitivity
- Post-void residual measurement
- For women – Pelvic exam to check for obstruction
- For Men – Digital rectal exam to check for enlarged prostate
- Renal Bladder Ultrasound
- CT Scan
- Urine Flow Studies
- Poor urinary stream with intermittent flow
- Straining to urinate
- Trying to urinate, a sense of incomplete voiding and hesitancy (a delay between urinating and the flow actually beginning).
- As the bladder remains full, it may lead to incontinence (can’t control urine)
- Nocturia (need to urinate at night)
- High frequency with very little urine output