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Question
I have an unusual question, I know.  I have since I was very young had a fascination with holding my urine to the point of beginning to loose control. As I got older it became sexual. I like to drink a lot of fluids and then hold. I have recently been indulging in this behavior more often and the question rose in mind as to how safe this practice was.  I have read more than on horror story about water intoxication and bladders being unable to contract after long holding sessions.  Are these risk real?  Are there other risk involved?  I don't know if I can stop completely... is there a safe limit to my desires?  

Please forgive me if I am being to forward.  I was too embarrassed/ashamed to ask my own medical doctor.

Answer
J.

OK, since you asked.  The risks are real and your current behavior is dangerous.  You could easily increase bladder size abnormally, permanently damage the bladder's ability to empty and cause other problems like water intoxication or diabetes insipidis.  There really is no safe limit.  It depends on what is your current bladder capacity and emptying ability.  If it's still normal, you're very fortunate.  If not, you'll pay a penalty for this later such as needed a tube (catheter) to empty the bladder.

Forget about your embarrassment.  You're not too embarrassed to send me the question!  Talk to your physician.

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Stephen W. Leslie, MD

Expertise

Questions concerning erectile dysfunction, kidney stones and prostate disorders including prostate cancer. I have a special interest in kidney stone disease prevention.

Experience

Full time practicing urologist with 30 years experience. Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief of Urology at Creighton University Medical Center. Editor in Chief of eMedicine Urology internet textbook. Author of only NIH approved book written for patients by a urologist on the subject of kidney stones "The Kidney Stones Handbook". Inventor of the "Parachute" and "Escape" kidney stone baskets and the "Calculus" stone prevention analysis computer program.

Organizations
American Urological Association, Ohio State Medical Association, Sexual Medicine Society

Publications
Men's Health, Journal of Urology, Urology, Healthwatch Magazine, Emergency Medicine Monthly, eMedicine, "The Kidney Stones Handbook", and numerous articles in various newspapers. He is also the editor of the Urology Board Review by McGraw-Hill used by urologists to study for their Board Certification Examinations.

Education/Credentials
Graduate of New York Medical College with residencies completed at Metropolitan Hospital New York, Albany Medical Center and University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Awards and Honors
Thirlby Award of the American Urological Association. Rated as one the country's Best Urologists by the Independent Consumer's Research Institute

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