Doxazosin Stress incontinence - Ladies only!

Posted , 11 users are following.

I'm a middle aged woman. I've been on beta-blockers for over 30 years. Three of years ago, I was prescribed doxazosin in addition to atenolol. Originally I was prescribed 4mg taken last thing at night of the slow release form and had little trouble with it. However my GP changed this to 2mg of a generic standard doxazosin. I began to feel very 'hung-over' and thick headed in the mornings, but my GP insisted that this is a very good drug with a lot of benefits and advised me to continue with it. I then began to experience some 'stress incontinence'. I put it down to being menopausal. I couldn't confidently cough or sneeze and I gave up playing tennis. Six weeks ago, I decided to speak to my GP again about changing my medication, I was getting more and more 'hung over' in the mornings, but he was on holiday. I decided on radical action, bought a BP monitor and stopped the doxosin. Almost immediately I felt fine in the mornings. Then I suddenly realised that I could cough without embarassment. My BP was a little higher, but I feel that I can live with it if its under 150/90. I looked up doxazosin and discovered that it is also prescribed to relax the bladder and urethra in men with enlarged prostate. I 'd be interested to know if there are any other women on this medication experiencing possibly unnecessary stress incontinence. I will be seeing my GP to discuss my medication regime very soon!

1 like, 27 replies

27 Replies

  • Posted

    That is interesting!

    I have complained to my GP for the last 2 years about the incontinence I have.

    I am on 4 mg Doxazosin, and I do have some bladder damage from radiotherapy, but I was not incontinent before the Doxazosin.

    GP of course refers me to the previous damage, and will not have it the it could be the drug - only men, he says!

    Due to various problems with the Doxazosin ( been on it 6 years) I have today been taken off it, and now starting a beta-blocker instead (Bisoprolol) so will see if the incontinence improves!

  • Posted

    I was interested to hear about the incontinence problem. My mother aged 86 has been on 1mg Doxazosin, one tablet twice daily, and although she did already have a slight incontinence problem, it has got considerably worse over the last 2 months or so. She has been taking these tablets since Sept 07, along with Bendroflumethiazide 2.5mg, one daily.

    I did suspect that the tablets might be contributing, as we have had problems several times before with different medications. Unfortunately, when one asks the doctor they will never admit that it could be the medication.

    I would be grateful for anyone else's experience in this particular matter.

  • Posted



  • Posted

    :roll: [color=darkblue:8c881bfa97][/color:8c881bfa97]

    I have been taking Doxazosin for only a week but have had scary moments with incontinence. I am only 62 but are worried that I might not make it to the loo in time whereas I have never felt concerned before. I am also feeling fuzzy-headed, headachey and tired in the afternoons and my sight seems blurred some of the time, so I can only put these down to the side effects of the drug. I have been taking it at night, so I might try taking it in the mornings. I'll keep you posted

  • Posted

    Hi all,

    I have very high blood pressure due to kidney problem caused through living with Insulin Dependent Diabetes for 50 years. I was on Doxazosin 4mg for several years with no side effects. Then recently they increased the Doxazosin to 8mg a day and I developed urge and stress incontinence as well as leg oedema.

    The leg swelling meant that when I went to bed the fluid returned into my blood stream and I was up to the toilet 2-3 times a night. When I got up I could not even reach the toilet without wetting myself and often dribbling on the floor.

    So I discussed this with my GP who, luckily for me, appeared very aware this was a possible side effect of the Doxazosin. So he told me to stop the Doxazosin 1 week ago to see if things improved - and they have. I have regained control over the sphincters in my bladder which means I can reach the toilet without wetting myself, as well as that the leg oedema is improved and I feel so much brighter in myself. Apparently Doxazosin can also cause tiredness and depression and I am beginning to think that this was a problem for me also.

    I go back next week to see my GP as he told me if the incontinence inproved there were other tablets I could take to control my BP - and he would work with me to find them.

    All I can tell you is this is my experience and advise you to go back to your GP and discuss this with them again. If they are not helpful then demand to see a Urologist as there is no need for women to suffer with incontinence nowadays.

  • Posted

    Appreciated reading these experiences just now as this may explain what has happened to my mother aged 91 when Doxazosin was added to her drugs at 4mg twice a day a few months ago. She began to have real difficulties with urinary incontinence happening completely unexpectedly as well as if she coughed and similarly unable to get to the loo in time. However, she chose to stop the Doxazosin a week or so ago whilst continuing on with her other blood pressure medication (bisoprolol etc) and has been so pleased that her incontinence has markedly diminished. She's very happy I let others know as she's found it relieving to learn of other ladies with similar experiences.
  • Posted

    [size=18:f4344d8a92][/size:f4344d8a92] I was given this medication a couple of monthe ago and immediatly experienced loss of bladder control, BUT I also developed diarrhea too. I have stopped taking toe doxazosin and the bladder control has improved as had the fatigue but I still have the uncontrolable diarrhea. Anyone else developed this problem?
  • Posted

    I have recently suffered very high blood pressure and given Doxasozin, after the first dose of this medication was so fatigued, and wondered why the loo was never near enough! Wondering why I should feel so lethargic I read the information leaflet that came with the medication, and low and behold all the symptoms I suffered were there in black and white! Having explained all this to my GP she changed the tablets to various other tablets and all is well again with good blood pressure readings. My advice to anyone taking these tablets and suffering the effects, go and seek advice from your GP you really dont have to suffer it!
  • Posted

    Hi Dith, I am having the same problems with Doxazosin can you let me know which tablets you have found work for you with less problems please.
  • Posted


    I feel so angry when I read the problems experienced with doxazosin - what are we, guinea pigs for pharmaceutical companies!! I wonder how many women are out there suffering in silence, religiousley taking the medication metered out by their GPs because, of course, 'they know best'.

    I was given doxazosin a couple of weeks ago by my GP because my BP was a little high - I already take attenolol and lisiniprill. I knew within a few days that it wasn't suiting me so I stopped taking it, rang the surgery, of course not allowed to speak to GP (not allowed beyond reception). The clerk said \"we can't tell you to stop taking medication\" to which I replied \"I know - I'm telling you that I have stopped taking the doxazsin and I would like you to advise my GP accordingly! Conequently, I was given an appointment to see the Practice Nurse in 5 days! [/b]

  • Posted

    I have had a transplant and take 8mg doxazosine, am and pm. After eating my stomach burns and then the diarrhea!

    I feel so embarressed sad sad

  • Posted

    I had been on Doxazosin for years and during those years my stress incontinence went from being a trickle and just using a panty liner to losing when walking or just standing up or sitting down, never mind coughing (which I did a lot of) or sneezing, and needing to wear the Tena Maxi Night all the time, changing probably 2-3 times per day. At this stage I hadn't connected it with Doxazosin.

    During this time though, I went to see my doctor numerous times complaining of muscle weakness, I was lethargic and slept most of the day and all night (apart from when I was coughing). They did various tests and all were negative. The only medication they checked was Simvastatin as this can cause muscle weakness but this proved negative. I got so depressed that they couldn't find what was wrong with me, I ended up needing to take anti-depressants! I'm slowing coming off these now.

    Eventually, I read the side effects for both Doxazosin and Ramipril (both for high bp). I was amazed at how many of the symptoms I had were listed. I immediately stopped taking the Doxazosin but continued with the Ramipril with the intention of coming off that as well. Within a week I felt much, much better. I felt better first thing, was nowhere near as tired, managed to stay awake during the day and had got my get-up-and-go back with a vengeance and did all of the jobs I had been putting off! My incontinence has improved to such and extent that I am back on Tena Normal and only need one a day. However, my bp did rise but not too dangerously.

    When I went for the usual check up with the nurse I told her what I had done and also that I wanted to come off Ramipril as well, as I thought this was creating the cough problem. The cough had become so violent that I would often vomit. I realised that I took the Ramipril after my evening meal and the cough was worse during the evening and overnight. She thought the low dose I was on (2.5) shouldn't have caused any problem and was told I shouldn't take any notice of what the leaflets said about side effects as they were only there for guidance and most people never had any problem! She said I should go back on the Doxazosin and go and see my GP before stopping any tablets. I told her there was no way I was going back on Doxazosin but I would continue with the Ramipril until I saw the GP.

    On seeing the GP (2 months must have gone by without Doxazosin) my bp was still a bit high but she wasn't overly concerned. She suggested the Ramipril was changed to Losarton. It appears a lot of people are having to come off Ramipril for the same reason. I told her I'd been on Losarton previously but the doctors changed it to Ramipril for reasons unknown (cost?).

    Even though my bp is still a bit on the high side, I feel much more myself and glad I realised what was happening as I don't think the doctors were inclined to think it was the medication.[size=18:28864facee][/size:28864facee]

  • Posted

    Have just been put in this drug and spent last 2 night practically running to the loo while wetting myself..

    OMG... and this is on 1mg of Doxzosin and only for 2 night so far - as for headaches.. I had already had one due to Very high BP 200/100 - already on Rampril 10mg but makes me feel sick and dopefied so doctor put me on this tablet.. Off to see him this morning. to "discuss the situation"..

    PS.... I unfortunately have a boat loads of meds due to different conditions one which includes

    taking Prenisolone every day( been on it for 3.5 yrs) different statins blah blah. I wouldn't mind if I was feeding on cakes, and bacon butties every day but I don't.

    Why don't they the treat the whole person instead of just chucking tablets at you willy nilly... without a concern..I am 57 work fulltime and on't need any further stress/crap in my life... moan other lol lol

    • Posted

      Yes mollymoos. That's exactly the effect they have on me - literally running to the loo at night and feeling tired the next day. It's grim. I can't live like this. Let me know if you find something better. After all this drug is also prescribed for men to help relax their prostrate and urinate better! 

  • Posted

    For anyone who is struggling with Doxazosin, my doctor eventually changed this medication to Vesicare lol . This was better for me but, although on the maximum dose, didn't eradicate the strong urge incontinence.

    I went on the Vesicare website and joined up to a programme they offer free. A nurse rings and talks to you about the problem and gives suggestions based on what you tell her. She also gets you to write down what and how much you drink and how many times you have to go to the toilet, day and night. I took the advice she gave me and there was definitely an improvement during the day, but I still get urges in the evening. As I am usually at home in the evenings, I can cope with this. Now I don't get the strong urges during the day, I am happy with the outcome.

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