Urinary urge incontinence: light bladder problems

A new implant, the bladder is selectively illuminated with LEDs, and could in the future help people with incontinence or increased urinary urgency. It has already been tested in rats and could in the future replace medication or electrical therapy.

In the case of the small implant, the reduced detects an Overactivity of the urinary bladder and the urge to urinate on light from small LEDs is a flexible belt that is tensioned to the bladder and the degree of filling and adjusts it. A Team of engineers and neuroscientists from several US universities, it has developed and in the journal Nature presented. In addition, the researchers have cells of the bladder nerves through treatment with special proteins sensitive to light, so that these can be stimulated by light.

The implant transmits wirelessly via Bluetooth, data on the activity of the bladder to a receiver device outside the body: "If the bladder is emptied too often, is sending the external device a Signal which the micro-LEDs on the bubble tape device aktiviert", Prof. Robert W. Gereau of Washington University School of Medicine explains. "The lights are then on the sensitive nerve cells in the bladder. This reduces the activity of the nerves, and restores normal bladder function again.” The scientists assume that the method also works in humans, and the device can be introduced without a major SURGERY via a catheter. The advantage of this method is that the nervous activity is only changed when needed.

Pain, irritable bladder and increased urinary problems are frequent urge. For more than 30 years of electro-therapy is used to treat certain incontinence forms. Thus, the nerve is inspected for the bubble responsible. Occasionally, these older devices, but to the disturbance of the control of other institutions.