An open dialogue about coexisting symptoms is an essential for building a foundation for better clinical outcomes and increased quality of life.
The benefits of patient centered care cannot be overestimated. A holistic approach reveals avenues for care that might otherwise be left neglected – opportunities missed to enhance the wellbeing of the patient. But what would a working model look like when it concerns patients with neurogenic bladder and bowel?
The impact on individuals’ quality of life of maintaining or restoring bladder and bowel continence cannot be underestimated. It is a top user priority but this is unfortunately not always reflected in healthcare and research initiatives.
The bladder and bowel are neighbours in the body and share innervation. Shared innervation means that the nerves travel together. This may be one reason why we commonly see an overlap in symptom profiles in lower urinary tract and colonic disorders.
Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and spinal cord injury all involve types of neurological damage that often cause bladder, bowel, and sexual problems. For example, among people with multiple sclerosis, bladder and sexual problems are common (occurring in more than 70% of cases according to some studies).