My bladder really fills up at night while I am asleep. If it fills up to the point of 800 or 900 cc's I wake up with a headache and get up to cath. Am I screwing up my Kidneys by allowing my bladder to get that full?
That is an excessive amount of urine. You not only run the risk of reflux to the kidneys, but so large an amount of urine is also more likely to become infected.
There is a positive side. That your bladder can hold that much urine without triggering an accident -- i.e., spontaneously voiding -- means that incidences of incontinence must be pretty rare. A large capacity bladder is a good place to start from as you learn how to better manage your bladder.
full bladder at night
townken: It is not unusual for folks with neurogenic bladders to produce much more urine during the night or to sweat more. This is a frequent phenomena and occurs because of an imbalance between hemodynamic and autonomic functions. A hemodynamic balance is being attempted by the body causing increased diuresis (increased urine output, sweating) because of increased blood flow to the kidneys.
AD is occurring because your full bladder is an irritant that is stimulating your sympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system. In turn this causes constriction of the blood vessels leading to AD symptoms because the normal counterbalance is blocked by the spinal cord injury. Bladder distention is the cause in about 90% of all cases.
It is best to keep your cathing volumes below 400-500 cc to avoid prolonged distention of the bladder wall muscle that can lead to further problems down the line. In addition, you would want to avoid reflux of your urine back up into the kidneys which can lead to infection. One large volume of 600-700 cc in a 24 hour period should be OK if this is not consistent. Have you had a CMG lately? This will give you and your doctor a better idea of how your bladder "behaves". There are other things you can do of course to help with this issue. How often are you cathing now? Are you cathing based on your volumes or just when you feel the sensation? You might want to cath right before you go to sleep and somewhere in the middle of the night (set your alarm). In addition, avoid too many fluids after dinner time and avoid drinks that can cause more diuresis such as those with caffeine and alcohol. PLG