What medications can be used to treat bedwetting?

What medications can be used to treat bedwetting?


There are two very common drugs that are used,
one is called desmopressin and the other is called oxybutynin. Desmopressin acts like
the anti diuretic hormone I’ve mentioned in the past. The whole idea of this drug is to
try and reduce the amount of urine that the kidneys are producing overnight and it can
be taken either as a tablet or slipped under the tongue as a little melt just before going
to bed. It’s started at a low dose and if there’s no benefit after a few weeks then
the dose can be increased to see if that helps. In general desmopressin is a very safe drug
to take, it doesn’t cause very many side effects. But like all medications there’s a very small
number of young people who may complain of some nausea, vomiting or loss of concentration
amongst other things whenever they’re taking the desmopressin. If you’re worried about
any new signs or symptoms that develop after your young person starts taking it you should
just have a chat to your family doctor about it. If the young person who’s taking desmopressin
starts to have any vomiting or diarrhoea it’s important that you don’t give the desmopressin
during this period of time because that can cause problems with the fluid in the body
and problems with the salts in the body. Oxybutynin is another very common medication
that’s used to try and help young people with bedwetting and oxybutynin acts like a relaxant
for the bladder, it chills the bladder out. It’s mainly used to try and treat the overactive
bladder that we see a lot in young people and if that’s present at night that can cause
the bladder to squeeze down and make the young person wet the bed and again it can be started
at a low dose and the dose increased if there’s no benefit to it. Again it can cause problems
such as nausea, vomiting, loss of concentration, change of mood. And again if you’re worried
about any new symptoms that develop after your young person starts to take oxybutynin
then it’s worthwhile having a chat to your family doctor about this. Bedwetting is such a common problem in young
people that NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) have developed
a guideline which should be used nationally, so it doesn’t matter if you go to see your
family doctor in London or somebody in the north of the country, they should be able
to follow these guidelines. NICE suggest that you can try either the desmopressin or the
oxybutynin as the first line treatment. If the drug that you’re given doesn’t work you
should then try the other drug, so if you’ve tried desmopressin and that hasn’t worked
then you should try oxybutynin and vice versa and if you find that desmopressin and oxybutinin
on their own have both failed, then the next step is a trial of both drugs together. If
desmopressin and oxybutynin together don’t work then there is another drug called imipramine
that can be used to try and help bedwetting. But by the time that you’re getting onto using
imipramine it doesn’t have a high success rate, but it does work in some young people
and if you warrant trying imipramine, your doctor will discuss this with you.

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