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For Overactive Bladder (OAB)

Bladder control problems affect tens of millions of people every day. If you’re one of them, you should speak up.

Does this sound familiar?

Going more than 8 times a day?

Avoiding social events?

Using pads to control leaks?


Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy Delivered by The InterStim System

Evidence suggests that breakdowns in the bladder-brain communication pathway may be a root cause of OAB and non-obstructive urinary retention. That’s why conventional treatments may not produce the results you want – they don’t directly target this miscommunication.


Unlike conventional treatments, the Medtronic InterStim systems gently stimulate the sacral nerves in the pelvic area that control the bladder. This may help restore bladder-brain communication and reduce symptoms.

Get more control with

InterStim Systems

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satisfaction among those who use it

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greater improvements in OAB quality of life

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of people achieved success at 5 years

More than 350,000 people worldwide have chosen the Medtronic InterStim systems for more control and long-lasting relief.

InterStim is the ONLY therapy that lets you see if it works before you and your doctor decide.

You are not alone.

Find relief for bladder control problems.

Overactive bladder (OAB) is a treatable condition. It’s not a normal part of aging. And you shouldn’t have to deal with it on your own.


Do You Qualify?  Take a two-minute quiz to see if you qualify for treatment.  TAKE THE QUIZ

Patient Stories
  • What is Urinary Retention?
    Urinary retention is defined as the inability to completely or partially empty the bladder. You may be unable to start urination, or if you are able to start, you can’t fully empty your bladder. Does This Sound Familiar? Difficulty starting to urinate Difficulty fully emptying the bladder Weak dribble or stream of urine Loss of small amounts of urine during the day Inability to feel when bladder is full Increased abdominal pressure Lack of urge to urinate Strained efforts to push urine out of the bladder Frequent urination Nocturia (waking up more than two times at night to urinate) Why Is This Happening? There are two general types of urinary retention: obstructive and non-obstructive. If there is an obstruction (for example, kidney stones), urine cannot flow freely through the urinary tract. Non-obstructive causes include a weak bladder muscle and nerve problems that interfere with signals between the brain and the bladder. If the nerves aren’t working properly, the brain may not get the message that the bladder is full. Some of the most common causes of non-obstructive urinary retention are: Stroke Vaginal childbirth Pelvic injury or trauma Impaired muscle or nerve function due to medication or anesthesia Accidents that injure the brain or spinal cord Obstructive retention may result from: Cancer Kidney or bladder stones Enlarged prostate (BPH) in men Please note: InterStim™ is not indicated for Obstructive Retention Treat Yourself to Less Worry Urinary retention is a treatable condition. Don’t be afraid to speak up about your symptoms and how they affect your daily life. This will help your doctor find the right treatment for you.
  • What are the symptoms of OAB?
    Symptoms of overactive bladder (OAB) include: Urge incontinence Going before you reach the bathroom Experiencing frequent leaks Using pads or protective garments Urgency-frequency Frequent, uncontrollable urge to go Going more than 8 times a day Feeling like your bladder is never empty Symptoms of urinary retention* include: Can't tell if your bladder is full Holding increasingly large amounts of urine Weak or dribbling stream Needing to use a catheter
  • Am I a good candidate for InterStim?
    Is InterStim Right for You? You may be a good candidate for Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy delivered by the InterStim systems if: You have significant OAB symptoms or non-obstructive urinary retention You’ve tried lifestyle changes and oral medications These therapies haven’t given you the relief you want
  • What are the Treatment Options for OAB?
    There are many ways to manage bladder control problems. Remember, if conservative treatments don’t deliver the results you need, you have more options. Lifestyle Changes Conservative treatments can help some people, but may not work very well (or at all) for others. All of these are relatively simple behavioral changes that you may already be doing. Diet and exercise: Changes may include decreasing your caffeine intake and getting more exercise. Bladder retraining: Also called biofeedback, this involves delaying going to the bathroom and sticking to a strict schedule. Pelvic floor strengthening: This can be accomplished through Kegel exercises, which involve repeatedly contracting and relaxing the muscles of the pelvic floor. Oral Medications When lifestyle changes fail to deliver the results you want, oral medications are the next step. These medications can help control symptoms but may cause other issues. You have to remember to take these medications every day. Some side effects can be unpleasant, such as dry mouth, blurry vision, constipation, and hypertension. Other side effects are more serious. In fact, limited study data suggests that one class of drugs for OAB (anticholinergics) may increase risk of dementia in elderly people.1 Even more important, these medications don't always work. In one survey, 72% of people said they stopped taking their medication after just six months. Advanced Therapies If conservative treatments don’t deliver the results you want, you have more options. Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy Delivered by The InterStim™ System Try it during an evaluation Proven long-term relief3 Implanting an InterStim™ system has risks similar to any surgical procedure, including swelling, bruising, bleeding, and infection. Talk with your doctor about ways to minimize these risks. Complications can occur with the evaluation, including movement of the wire, technical problems with the device, and some temporary pain. Your doctor or nurse will provide you with the information regarding how to operate the test device and inform you of other precautions related to the evaluation and activity restrictions. Learn More About Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy Delivered by the InterStim System Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information. Important Safety Information