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Excessive urination at night
Excessive urination at night, also referred to as nocturia or nycturia, is a medical condition, that describes the necessity to release the urine during night-time. As a rule, human organism produces concentrated urine during sleeping, which eventually will not force the patient to void. Nocturia reverse this mechanism, further leading to at least one sleep interruption. Excessive urination at night, however, is not a disease itself, but only a symptom of its presence. It may appear as a consequence of various disorders and affects people regardless of age and gender. Proper treatment is highly recommended, since nocturia may have significant impact on life quality, due to sleep disorders. According to the University of Vienna, the problem is mostly seen in the elderlies, representing the occurrence rate of up to 50% of all individuals above 70 years old.
Excessive urination at night can occur as a result of fluid imbalance, lower urinary tract (LUT) disorders and neurological diseases that have impact on bladder functioning. The most common causes related with aforementioned disorders include:
- Infections of the urinary tract, prostate, kidney or bladder.
- Excessive fluid intake
- Diabetes Mellitus or Insipidus
- Multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease or other neurological diseases that influence functioning of the bladder.
- Use of certain medications or drugs, such as diuretics, caffeine and alcohol.
- Overactive bladder syndrome (OAB)
What is interesting, excessive urination at night can appear in the course of pregnancy as well. It is a common sign, which occurs especially in later stages, when the fetus size increased enough to put a pressure to the bladder.
Excessive urination at night can significantly influence the quality of life. Seeing that the condition disturb the sleeping cycle, it can lead to various complications, such as insomnia and sleep deprivation. Afterwards, the patient may become a victim of the increased irritability, lack of energy, depression or headaches. What is more, nocturia can occur due to serious underlying conditions, such as renal failure. In those incidents, the associated symptoms can be even more agonizing.
Identifying the cause is occasionally problematic, and in some incidents, the exact source and mechanism of nocturia may remain unclear. When it comes to the actual diagnostic process, the specialist will investigate the medical history and instruct the patient to maintain a dairy for several days or few weeks. The diary will presumably consist a daily intake of fluids, voiding frequency and timing, as well as volume of excreted urine at night. Nevertheless, in order to reveal the underlying disorder, a healthcare provider needs to perform few examinations. The most common methods include physical examination of the abdomen, blood test, fluid deprivation test and, in certain cases, imaging.
The regular treatment for excessive urination at night varies, depending on the underlying cause, since there is no exclusive cure for nocturia. At first, it is highly recommended to adjust certain aspects of everyday routine. Restricting intake of fluid, especially in the evening, is usually the initial step. Alcohol and caffeine consumption should also be restricted, and preferably cut out completely. Additionally, a specialist can also prescribe specific medications, that will help to control the bladder and reduce the urine production. The most effective substances include desmopressin, oxybutynin, bumetanide and tolterodine. Yet still, in order to cure nocturia, the source must be eliminated.