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What is the cause of adult bed wetting ?

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Practicing since : 2005
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Our son is 30 years old and in excellent health . He is 5 feet seven inches tall and 165 pounds. He is working and staying alone in California. We, his parents, are living outside the US. Last week suddenly he finds himself wetting the bed at night.every night . He has absolutely no problem during the daytime. He lives a very clean life with no drugs or alcohol. He is not on any medication either. This has never happened before. He went to a local hospital and they ruled out UTI after urine tests. and ruled out diabetes and prostate problems. He has no history of bed wetting as a child or growing up. We were surprised as this comes as a shock . He does not have constipation. The only lifestyle change is that he has been sleeping in an air mattress for about three weeks for the first time as he shifted to a new apartment. , coincident with the beginning of the night bed wetting. The doctors have asked that a lumbar tap be done. What could be the reason ? There is no family history of any chronic diseases or conditions either. He may be under stress, as he has not found a life partner after 3 to 4 years of searching, Could his bed wetting condition be temporary ? What will the spinal tap potentially reveal ? We are concerned. He does not have other symptoms like headache or dizziness etc, He is in excellent health and hikes/bikes regularly.
Posted Tue, 8 May 2012 in Men's Health
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 37 minutes later
Hi Ananth,

Thanks for your query,

Adult onset bedwetting is classified as secondary nocturnal enuresis. One of the most common causes of secondary nocturnal enuresis is a bladder, and consequentially, there is a lack of control when it comes to urination.

If this is the cause, then the person will most likely experience incontinence during the day as well.
It can signal the onset of Type 2 Diabetes.
Sleep disorders such as night seizures and sleep apnea can also trigger enuresis.
Additional causes of secondary enuresis may also include
urinary tract stones, neurological disorders,
anatomical abnormalities, urinary tract calculi,
prostate cancer, prostate enlargement, antipsychotic drugs intake
bladder cancer, and obstructive sleep apnea.
In very rare cases, acute anxiety or emotional disorder may cause adult bedwetting.

As in your case diabetes ,UTI, Prostate problems are ruled out.

Is he undergoin any stress?
Any h/o any drug intake?

A visit to neurologist will be advisable.

Spinal tap for CSF exam will rule out neurological involvement.

Mostly condition will be short lasting in absence of any definite cause.

However complete work up is essential.

Hope this answers your query.
Feel free to ask any further questions.

Take care.
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