The spinal cord forms a vital link between the brain and the rest of the body and is part of the central nervous system. Together with the brain it controls many bodily functions including: breathing, movement, sensation and/or bladder and bowel emptying.
The spinal cord is protected by the bones of the spine and is cushioned by a clear fluid called cerebral spinal fluid. Nerves enter and exit the spinal cord at different points to control the various parts of the body including the bladder.
The stretch receptors of the bladder are connected to nerves that send signals up through the spine to the brain when it is time to urinate. If it’s convenient for a person to do it, then the brain sends the message back that it’s okay to release urine.
If the spinal cord is damaged, this messaging system may not work, resulting in bladder problems.
These are general guidelines meant to help you with typical questions. You should follow the specific instructions provided by your healthcare provider and the intermittent catheterization solution you are using.