What Is a Decompressed Bladder?

A decompressed bladder is a bladder that is empty, accotding to HealthTap. A bladder can become decompressed via normal urination or via leakage in patients with incontinence. A catheter can also be used to keep a bladder in a decompressed state in medical settings, notes Penn Medicine.

Urinary retention is an example of a medical complication addressed with decompression of the bladder using a catheter, explains the American Academy of Family Physicians. Patients with urinary retention are unable to empty their bladders voluntarily due to a wide range of causes, such as obstructions, neurological issues, infections or prescription drug side effects. Cases of urinary retention can be acute or chronic, and patients who suffer from chronic urinary retention can use self-catheterization to keep their bladders decompressed.

Patients whose bladders involuntarily decompress can receive bladder training, perform Kegel exercises or take prescription medications to manage their incontinence, notes Merck Manuals. Bladder training typically requires that patients go to the restroom on a timed interval, such as every two to three hours. The training helps individuals change their urination habits to compensate for their overactive or weakened bladders.

Kegel exercises involve contracting the pelvic muscles to strengthen them over time. Pelvic floor electrical stimulation is a treatment option that contracts the pelvic muscles for the patient using electrical currents, explains Merck Manuals. An advantage of this automated contraction is that it ensures the right muscles are contracted, rather than buttock, thigh or stomach muscles.