InterStim® Therapy (Implant) for Overactive Bladder (OAB)

InterStim Therapy® expands options for patients with urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, or nonobstructive urinary retention.

InterStim® Therapy is a proven neuromodulation therapy that targets the communication problem between the brain and nerves that control the bladder. If those nerves are not communicating correctly, the bladder will not function properly.

The InterStim® system uses an external device during a trial assessment period and an internal device for long-term therapy. You and your doctor may decide to try InterStim® Therapy by going through a trial assessment, you and your doctor will determine the next step that is right for you.

Should I Consider InterStim® Therapy as a Treatment Option?

If you’ve tried other treatments without success or could not tolerate the side effects, InterStim® Therapy may be the answer for you.

Will InterStim® Treatment Work for Me?

If you’ve tried several treatments for bladder control problems without success, don’t lose hope. There is no single bladder control treatment that works for everyone, and sometimes it takes time to find the one that works for you.

A simple in-office procedure initiates an evaluation to determine in as few as 3-7 days whether an implanted InterStim® system is likely to provide long-term control over symptoms.

Your doctor will discuss the evaluation procedure with you and the options for using either a temporary lead (a thin wire) or long-term lead for the evaluation. You and your doctor will decide together whether your evaluation was successful. The evaluation is considered a success if you experience a significant reduction in your symptoms.

For example, your evaluation may be considered a success if you went to the bathroom 20 times per day before the evaluation and went 10 or fewer times per day during the evaluation.

How Effective Is InterStim® Therapy?

The InterStim® System, is an effective, long-term treatment that is clinically proven to:

  • Significantly improve quality of life
  • Relieve symptoms when other treatments fail
  • InterStim® Therapy is clinically proven to improve bladder control in people who have not had success with other treatments, such as oral medication, behavioral therapies, and dietary and fluid changes.

In a long -term clinical study, it was found that 59% of patients with urge incontinence who received the InterStim® System and completed follow-up with their doctors had at least 50% fewer leaks per day when compared to the number of leaks before therapy.

How Does InterStim® Therapy Work?

InterStim® Therapy works with the sacral nerves, located near the tailbone. The sacral nerves control the bladder and muscles related to urinary function.

It is believed that one possible cause of overactive bladder is miscommunication between the brain and the sacral nerves; when the brain and sacral nerves don’t communicate correctly, the nerves will not tell the bladder to function correctly, which can cause bladder control problems.

The theory behind InterStim® Therapy is that gentle electrical stimulation of the sacral nerves reduces the signals to the nervous system which may be causing bladder control symptoms such as leaks, the sudden urge to go, or going too often.

What are Risks and Side Effects of InterStim® Therapy?

Implanting an InterStim® System has risks similar to any surgical procedure, including swelling, bruising, bleeding, and infection. Talk with your doctor about ways to minimize these risks.

InterStim® Therapy might cause you to experience some of these side effects:

  • Pain at the implant site or new pain
  • Infection or skin irritation
  • Lead (thin wire) movement/migration
  • Device problems
  • Interactions with certain other devices or diagnostic equipment
  • Undesirable changes in urinary or bowel function
  • Uncomfortable stimulation (sometimes described as a jolting or shocking feeling)

For more information on side effects talk with your doctor.

Questions About OAB or Treatments?

If you have any questions about OAB or any of the treatments or think a specific treatment is the right option for you, please discuss these options with your physician, request an appointment or contact us today at 815.409.4930.

InterStim Therapy Brochure

It’s not easy living with anxiety, embarrassing episodes, and lack of freedom that can come with bladder control problems. Learn how you can leave the constant worry behind and achieve lasting bladder control.

Download Our InterStim Therapy Brochure