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Difficulty Urinating – Could You Have Cauda Equina Syndrome?

If you are having trouble urinating, it is possible that you have a rare condition called cauda equina syndrome.

Cauda equina syndrome and urinary difficulties

Cauda equina syndrome is when the cauda equina nerves at the bottom of the spine are compressed. This may happen in a number of ways, such as a slipped disc, traumatic injury or tumour. Because the nerves are so sensitive, any compression will quickly lead to nerve damage, after which the function of the nerves will deteriorate.

The loss of function will result in a variety of physical symptoms. Perhaps the most notable sign is urinary dysfunction, as the cauda equina nerves enable sensation and function in the pelvic organs, including the bladder. These urinary difficulties will involve some or all of the following:-

As the condition continues, these urinary difficulties will become increasingly worse. Eventually the nerves will be so damaged that function is lost altogether. At this point a patient’s symptoms will alter in that there will be no sensation whatsoever in the bladder. Because of this, the patient will not know when their bladder is full and will not be able to go to the toilet. Consequently the bladder will become so full that the urine overflows, resulting in an episode of incontinence.

Other symptoms of cauda equina syndrome

Along with urinary difficulties, there are other symptoms associated with cauda equina syndrome. These include:-

When these symptoms appear in conjunction with urinary dysfunction, medical professionals must consider the possibility of cauda equina syndrome. If you have these symptoms and you are yet to seek medical attention, you should go to A&E without delay.

Failure to diagnose cauda equina syndrome

Unfortunately there are occasions when a person will present with the classical signs of cauda equina compression, yet medical professionals fail to make a diagnosis. This failure will be deemed unacceptable, as a competent medical practitioner should be able to recognise the symptoms of nerve compression and manage a patient accordingly.

If you have suffered harm because of a delayed diagnosis and you believe medical error is to blame, please get in touch with us today. You could be entitled to claim compensation.

Please call us free on 0800 234 3300, from a mobile click to call 01275 334030 or complete our Free Online Enquiry for a no cost, no obligation opinion.

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