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I Have My Life Back


My life was drastically altered after I underwent a laparoscopic hysterectomy in in March, 1993. I experienced urinary complications from the surgery.

I was unable to pass urine and had no sense of when my bladder was full. As a result I was incontinent. Despite my doctors’s assurances that such complications were common and that normal functions would return, my problems continued and worsened over the three years. The tests I underwent revealed an atonic bladder. This means that the muscle of my bladder was unable to contract strongly enough to push urine out. I was taught self-catheterization to empty my bladder.

Even with this I began experiencing recurrent bladder infections and pelvic pain caused by a constant full bladder. My urologist told me that my conditions was hopeless and encouraged me to stop working due to my disability. My travel was restricted and I was embarrassed to use public washrooms. I found self-catheterizing very awkward and painful. By this time I was close to despair, but my husband John was not willing to give up and continued to seek answers.

His research led him to an internet article published by a physician who was an expert on chronic bladder problems. I went to see the physician in June of 1996 and he conducted tests to determine my suitability for a (then) new implant device that might alleviate my condition. The results indicated that I was a suitable candidate and I had the surgery on August 27, 1996.

I am happy to report that to date the implant has worked marvelously and I have not needed to self-catheterize since the operation! I have started a full-time job and my total well being has changed dramatically. I once again have a positive outlook on life! This operation was truly a blessing for me.

Reprinted with permission from The Canadian Continence Foundation.

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