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Urinary Dysfunction After Cauda Equina Syndrome

If Cauda Equina Syndrome is not treated quickly enough, it is possible that a patient will be left with permanent urinary dysfunction. If this has happened to you and you believe a delay in diagnosis and treatment can be attributed to medical professionals, you need to talk to a solicitor about your injuries.

Why does Cauda Equina Syndrome cause urinary dysfunction?

Cauda Equina Syndrome is a rare condition that develops after the cauda equina nerves (which are located at the bottom of the spinal cord) become compressed. This might occur because a vertebral disc in the lumbar region becomes dislodged, a spinal tumour grows on the bottom of the spine, or a traumatic accident crushes the spine against the nerves.

Whatever the reason, if the cauda equina nerves are placed under pressure, they will quickly begin to suffer injury. This is because they are extremely delicate and very sensitive to any sort of compression. When the nerves do start to become damaged, they will begin to lose their function.

The cauda equina nerves are responsible for:

Therefore when the cauda equina nerves become damaged, the functions described above will begin to deteriorate, causing someone to experience reduced sensation in the legs, perineum and genitalia, sexual dysfunction, poor anal tone and altered urinary habits (starting with diminished bladder sensation and progressing to a complete inability to void).

Is urinary dysfunction permanent?

Because human beings urinate frequently every day, bladder dysfunction is probably one of the most distressing symptoms of Cauda Equina Syndrome. The problem can be rectified – but only if treatment is provided before the condition becomes ‘complete’.

In the early stages of Cauda Equina Syndrome, the affected individual will have urinary problems, but will still have some sensation in the bladder. As the nerves become more and more damaged, the condition will advance to the complete stage, whereby there is painless urinary retention. When this happens, the nerves will be so injured that a repair will prove ineffective. This means that a patient will face the life-long complications associated with Cauda Equina Syndrome – including urinary dysfunction. Many will need to learn self-catheterisation as a result.

Have you suffered urinary dysfunction because of Cauda Equina compression?

If you have been left with permanent urinary dysfunction because of cauda equina nerve compression, you need to consider why this was allowed to happen. Was it because medical professionals failed to diagnose and treat your condition during the incomplete stage? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for the injuries this negligence has caused.

To find out more about making a medical negligence claim, contact us at the Cauda Equina Solicitors.

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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