Semin Neurol 2020; 40(05): 569-579
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1713876
Review Article

Neurogenic Bladder: Epidemiology, Diagnosis, and Management

1   Department of Uro-Neurology, The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, London, United Kingdom
› Author Affiliations


Lower urinary tract dysfunction is a common sequel of neurological disease resulting in symptoms that significantly impacts quality of life. The site of the neurological lesion and its nature influence the pattern of dysfunction. The risk for developing upper urinary tract damage and renal failure is considerably lower in patients with slowly progressive nontraumatic neurological disorders, compared with those with spinal cord injury or spina bifida. This acknowledged difference in morbidity is considered when developing appropriate management algorithms. The preliminary evaluation consists of history taking, and a bladder diary and may be supplemented by tests such as uroflowmetry, post-void residual measurement, renal ultrasound, (video-)urodynamics, neurophysiology, and urethrocystoscopy, depending on the clinical indications. Incomplete bladder emptying is most often managed by intermittent catheterization, and storage dysfunction is managed by antimuscarinic medications. Intra-detrusor injections of onabotulinumtoxinA have revolutionized the management of neurogenic detrusor overactivity. Neuromodulation offers promise for managing both storage and voiding dysfunction. In select patients, reconstructive urological surgery may become necessary. An individualized, patient-tailored approach is required for the management of lower urinary tract dysfunction in this special population.

Publication History

Article published online:
16 October 2020

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