This innovative treatment for Overactive Bladder actually works with a nerve in your ankle, instead of directly on your bladder. You may not know this but the posterior tibial nerve, which sits just behind your ankle, mingles with the bladder nerve and affects urinary incontinence.
PTNS is an in-office procedure that initially stimulates the posterior tibial nerve in your ankle. The nerve sensation then travels from your ankle to the spinal column where it connects with the bladder nerve in the S3 nerve root. The treatments aim to retrain the bladder nerve via the tibial nerve.
A tiny needle is gently tapped into the area behind the ankle, next to (not into), the posterior tibial nerve. The needle then connects to a neuro-stimulator to send messages to your bladder nerve. Once the needle is inserted and connected, you rest with your foot propped up for about 20 minutes while the treatment commences. At the conclusion of the treatment, the needle is removed.
The procedure is painless. You may experience a buzzing feeling in your foot during the procedure, but it does not hurt.
The recommended course is one 20-minute session, weekly, for 12 weeks. After the initial 12-week period, treatments are every 3 weeks for 4 months. Each patient is different, and the exact treatment schedule is individualized for you.
Some women choose PTNS treatment in conjunction with other treatments, such as medications or pelvic floor training, for optimal results.
Two types of overactive bladder cause problems for women: dry and wet. With dry overactive bladder, you frequently have the “gotta go” feeling and make too many trips to the bathroom. Those who suffer from wet overactive bladder cannot make it to the bathroom in time, and wet their panties. PTNS is a great option for both types.
Once the needle is removed you may resume regular activities immediately. It may take a few weeks to see improvement, but almost every patient notices a big difference in the number of trips to the bathroom and urine leakage.
Unless you have a pacemaker or nerve damage, you are a candidate for PTNS. It is a great non-surgical, non-pharmaceutical way to treat Overactive Bladder.
Call our office at 281.717.4003 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Christi to see if PTNS is right for you.