Caffeine is the world’s most widely consumed drug

Caffeine is the world's most widely consumed drug

Coffee, lovely to drink

Caffeine is the world’s most widely consumed drug. It changes brain function and results in alterations in perception, mood or consciousness. Unlike many other psychoactive substances it is legal. If you have MS and an unreliable bladder then caffeine is definitely bad news.

I love a cup or two of coffee in the morning but there is a price to pay.

These days I have to go to the loo too frequently and I must wear a pad. This is so leaks from my wretched bladder are not advertised to the world. Its can be soooo embarrassing.

Caffeine is the world’s most widely consumed drug

Someone suggested to me that I ought to think about getting Botox injections because my bladder was becoming more and more unreliable.  I have lived with this  problem for over half my life but needs must.

Bladder diary

In December 2014 my doctor referred me to a consultant. The date for the appointment to checkout my bladder spasms had finally arrived, its March 2015. Beforehand I had had to fill out a bladder diary showing volumes of liquid drunk and volume I peed. I also had to write down the type of drink, water, tea, coffee or alcohol.

Its hard enough inserting a catheter but to hold a catheter in one hand and a measuring jug in the other to catch the flow. Its a whole new world.

A compromise

Day of the appointment, I trundle off to see the consultant. He looked at my bladder diary and grunted unsympathetically and said I should catheterise more often. I now felt about 6 inches tall. Then I had the urodynaminic tests, not a very dignifying process. Getting into a gown, tubes inserted into my bladder and up my backside then water pumped into my bladder.

Dignity

All my dignity was stripped away for the testing. After I had got dressed and regained some dignity and pride the consultant looked at the results of the tests. He told me that my bladder was oversensitive. What a surprise 🙁 .

He added that I did not need treatment with botox just yet however my medication needed changing.

This was not the result I was looking for.

Caffeine is the world's most widely consumed drug

Then came the bombshell

The consultant stood behind his equipment. Then he said I really ought to give up drinking tea and coffee and no more alcohol.

I dug my heels in and said ‘No’.

I went on , ‘this disease has taken enough chunks out of my life I’m not prepared to give them up’.

Yup I can be a bit strong headed.

The registrar looked very sympathetic. She suggested that I just try giving up tea and coffee for a couple of weeks. Also try drinkng less alcohol because that does not help either. She went on to add that caffeine often creates bladder continence problems such as urgency.  It was a compromise and I agreed on this course of action.

March 2015

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