Overactive bladder (OAB) and Botox injection

What is it?

Overactive bladder (OAB) often happens when you feel a strong urge to go pee and have a difficult time controlling this urge. This can result in frequent trips to the bathroom or leaking of urine.

For some people with OAB Botox injections (shots) in the bladder can help symptoms.

What are the signs of OAB?

  • Urinary urgency
  • Urinary frequency
  • Leakage of urine

How does Botox work?

Botox is injected into the wall of the bladder using a special device called a cystoscope. This is a lit scope that looks into the bladder and urethra.

It is done in the office with local anesthetic.

Botox helps block the contraction of the muscle in the bladder wall that cause the urge to urinate.

For many people this means less urinary leaking and less frequent trips to the bathroom.

For most people it lasts 6 to 8 months. When it stops working you may have another injection.

After the procedure

You may do your normal activities. You may bath and shower as normal.

Drink fluids to keep your pee a pale yellow. This lowers your risk of infection.

When you go to the bathroom

  • You may notice light spotting or blood in your urine for 1 or 2 days. This is normal.
  • You may have the urge to pee quickly.
  • You may have discomfort with peeing for a few days.

If you are not able to pee at all:

  • Use the catheter we gave you.
  • Call the urogynecology nurse at 1-319-467-2476.


You were given 1 dose of antibiotics at the time of your procedure. This helps lower the chance of a urinary tract infection (bladder infection).

If you are given a prescription for an antibiotic, take it until they are gone. Do not miss any doses over the next 3 days. This lowers your chance of a urinary tract infection.

Keep taking your normal medicines.

You may take blood thinners, such as aspirin.

You may have some discomfort. Over-the-counter pain medicines may help ease your pain.

Follow up

You will follow up in 2 weeks with the nurse to be sure you are emptying your bladder normally.

Call our office or your local doctor if you have:

  • A fever over 100.4° F
  • Chills
  • Signs of a urinary tract infection, such as:
    • Frequency
    • Urgency
    • Pain or burning when you pee
    • Blood in your pee after the first 2 days
    • Pain in your kidney area
  • If you do not feel you are emptying your bladder fully
Last reviewed: 
May 2020

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