The bladder is a hollow organ protected by the pelvis and acts as a storage organ for urine which is constantly produced by the kidneys. Its wall is made of a thin mucous membrane and a layer of muscle. It is closed by an internal sphincter at the top of the urethra and an external sphincter that is formed by the muscles of the pelvic floor.
Depending on the level to which it is filled, the external shape of the bladder varies from roughly egg-shaped to round. When it is filled to its maximum, it looks like an air balloon. When the amount of urine exceeds a certain level (more than about 300 ml), the urge to urinate builds up and a signal is sent to the brain via receptors and a complex nervous system1. During urination the muscles of the bladder tense, the sphincter relaxes allowing the urine to flow.
1 Zentralverband der Ärzte für Naturheilverfahren e. V. (2005):
Ratgeber Nieren, Blase, Prostata. 1. Auflage. Deutscher Reform-Verlag GmbH Oberursel
Did you know that emptying the bladder is partly voluntary and partly controlled by reflexes? As the muscles of the bladder tense, this leads to involuntary opening of the internal sphincter at the base of the bladder. On the other hand, the external sphincter is voluntarily relaxed, allowing urine to flow through the urethra. Tightening the abdominal and pelvic muscles encourages emptying.
Normally the bladder is almost completely emptied.
Each day the kidneys excrete about one and a half litres of urine via the bladder.2 Urine is made up primarily of water but it also contains excretory products from the human metabolism.
Emptying the bladder 3 to 5 times a day is usual3. This can increase to up to 8 times a day, depending on the amount of fluid intake.
If you notice a considerable increase in the urge to urinate, even though you are drinking the same amount, this may indicate a dysfunction or a urinary tract infection.
Urinary analysis can provide your doctor with important information about infections, metabolic disorders (e.g. diabetes) or kidney damage.
3 Lukacz et al. A healthy bladder: a consensus statement. Int J Clin Pract, October 2011, 65, 10, 1026–1036 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21923844
Do you suffer from frequent urinary urges? You might have an overactive bladder. Find advice and more information here.more >>
Find out more about bladder weakness, incontinence and other bladder problems and how UROSTEMOL® is used to help.more >>
UROSTEMOL Men & Femina, these are traditional herbal medicinal products for use in the relief of lower urinary tract symptoms related to an overactive bladder or bladder weakness, exclusively based upon long-standing use. Visit your doctor before use to rule out any underlying conditions. Always read the leaflet.
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