InterStim® Therapy is an effective surgical treatment for bladder and bowel incontinence. It is a neuromodulation therapy that targets the communication issue between the brain and the nerves that control the bladder.
What exactly does this mean? And is InterStim right for you? InterStim is a small device implanted beneath the skin of your pelvis. It acts as a modulator of neurological signs-bridging the communication barrier between your brain and sacral nerve, which enables proper function of bladder, bowels, sphincter and pelvic muscles.
The small InterStim device emits electrical pulses. These pulses target an area near the sacral nerve, which modulates the neural activity that controls the bladder and bowels. Essentially, these electrical pulses allow you to control your urinary or bowel function.
InterStim may be the right course of treatment for your incontinence. But how do you know if it will work for you?
The first thing to do is work with your physician on what is best for your individual case. First, they will have you try non-invasive treatments such as medication or physical therapy. If those are not successful, the next step could be surgery.
You may qualify for InterStim if:
· You have many urges, either urinary or bowel.
· You have urgency and frequency.
· You experience urinary retention, but do not have an obstruction.
· You want an alternative to oral medication, patches, etc. because they are not working, or because of side effects.
If your physician thinks InterStim could work for your bowel or bladder incontinence, he or she will have you complete a trial evaluation with it. This trial works to find out if this is the right solution for you. Your physician will insert a temporary device for you that you will wear up to two weeks. The patients who are right for InterStim will feel relief from their urgency and incontinence symptoms during the trial.
InterStim Therapy is not right for you if:
· Your incontinence is stress incontinence, not urge incontinence.
· You have a urinary obstruction.
· You are not able to operate the system during your trial.
· Your individual results from your trial evaluation did not demonstrate an appropriate response.
One of the benefits of InterStim Therapy is that unlike oral medication, which targets the muscular component of bladder control, it offers control through nerve activity. This is a more permanent solution. The InterStim Therapy procedure itself is when the device is implanted as an outpatient procedure. InterStim is also Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved. InterStim device itself is about the size of a silver dollar, and it is implanted under the skin.
To learn more about treatment options including InterStim Therapy, contact us. Or call our discreet, dedicated Medical Concierge at 800-771-1953.