Urinary retention is defined as the inability to completely or partially empty the bladder. One may be unable to start urination. Or, if they are unable to start, they can't fully empty their bladder.
There are two general types of urinary retention: obstructive and non-obstructive. If there is an obstruction (for example, kidney stones), urine cannot flow freely through the urinary tract. Non-obstructive causes include a weak bladder muscle and nerve problems that interfere with signals between the bladder and the brain. If the nerves aren’t working properly, the brain may not get the message that the bladder is full.
Some of the most common causes of non-obstructive urinary retention are:
Obstructive retention may result from:
Urinary retention is a treatable condition. Don’t be afraid to speak up about the symptoms and how they affect daily life. This will help the doctor find the right treatment.