InterStim - Puyallup Surgical Consultants
standard-title InterStim Therapy for Bladder Control


Therapy for Bladder Control

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy delivered by the InterStim system?

A: This therapy targets the nerves that control your bladder to help it function normally again.

Q: How does it work?

A: Medtronic Bladder Control Therapy delivered by the InterStim™ system restores* bladder function by gently stimulating the sacral nerves.

Q: Why does it treat the sacral nerves?

A: It’s thought that bladder control problems are caused by miscommunication between the brain and the sacral nerves, which control the bladder and muscles involved in urination.

Q: What are the benefits of this therapy?

A: With this therapy, you may experience fewer trips to the bathroom, fewer accidents, and more confidence as you get back to the activities you enjoy.

Q: What are the potential side effects or complications?

A: Implanting an InterStim system has risks similar to any surgical procedure, including swelling, bruising, bleeding, and infection. Talk with your doctor about ways to minimize these risks.

Q: What makes this therapy different than other options?

A: It is the only advanced therapy for OAB that is clinically superior to oral medication.

And it’s the only therapy that lets you try it first during an evaluation.

Q: How long does the relief last?

A: This therapy significantly reduced symptoms of OAB and non-obstructive urinary retention in people treated for 5 years.1 Your experience may be different.

Q: Will this therapy cure my condition?

A: No. It can be effective, but it’s not a cure. If the neurostimulator is turned off or removed, symptoms can return.

Q: What does the stimulation feel like?

A: Most people describe it as a slight pulling, tingling, or fluttering sensation in the pelvic area. It should not be painful. Stimulation settings can be adjusted, and sensations will vary from person to person.

Q: Can I get an MRI when I receive this therapy?

A: Getting an MRI head scan may be possible under specific conditions. For more information, talk with your doctor.

Q: Will insurance cover the costs?

A: Medicare and many private insurance companies cover this therapy. Talk to your doctor to learn more about your insurance coverage.

Q: How long has this therapy been around?

A: It is an FDA-approved therapy doctors have used to treat bladder control problems for nearly 20 years. More than 225,000 people have received this therapy.