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Can frequent urination at night be treated?

A study from Taiwan shows that a simple nasal spray controls nighttime urination in men who were not helped by drugs usually prescribed by physicians today. At night, the brains of most younger people produce a hormone called antidiuretic hormone that shuts down the kidneys. However, as men age, most have to get up at night to urinate. Some men have to do this more than six times a night, which interferes with sleep and makes them very tired during the day. Doctors prescribe muscle relaxants and some patients find that they help. However, a very large percentage of older men go from doctor to doctor and are unable to find a drug that will control their night-time urination. Researchers in Taiwan prescribed a nasal spray containing antidiuretic hormone to older men who urinated more than six times each night and had not been helped by conventional treatments (British Journal of Urology International, December 2005.) More than 85 percent improved in a very short time.

Muscle relaxants that help some men include: Hytrin (terazosin), 1 mg to 10mg at bedtime; Cardura (doxazosin) 1 to 8 mg at bedtime; Flomax (tamsulosin) 0.4 to 0.8 mg once a day; Uroxatrol (alfuzosin)10 mg once a day.

Hormone blockers help only a little and are not as effective as doctors used to think. They include Proscar (finasteride), 5 mg once a day; and Avodart (dutasteride), 0.5 mg once a day.

The antidiuretic hormone that was used in this study shuts down the kidneys temporarily and is effective for both men and women. It is called DDAVP (desmopressin) and is available as pills or a nasal spray, by prescription. The pills are given 0.2 to 0.6 mg at bedtime. The DDAVP nasal spray dose is one spray into one nostril at bedtime. Do not take any fluids after 6:00 PM. Do not take any other medications that can raise blood pressure.
Also see Chronic Prostatitis

British Journal of Urology International, December 2005
Checked 10/10/10

May 16th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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