In UK, a woman identified as Elle Adams, has been diagnosed with a rare condition after she was unable to go urinate for over a year, no matter how much she drank and kept herself hydrated.

Elle Adams, a 30-year-old content creator from east London, had her life turned upside down in October 2020 when she woke up unable to urinate. Despite being in good health with no previous issues, she found herself unable to complete a simple task like going to the toilet, and her concerns grew when she realized no amount of liquid would make her urinate.

After visiting St. Thomas Hospital in London, doctors discovered that she had one liter of urine in her bladder, which is twice the amount it should be able to hold. Adams was given an emergency catheter, a tube passed into the bladder to drain urine. For the next seven months, Elle continued with the issue of not being able to pee.

Adams made an appointment to see a urologist eight months later, and it was then that she was diagnosed with Fowler’s syndrome, a rare condition that affects the bladder’s ability to empty.

Throughout her ordeal, Adams maintained a positive attitude, saying that she couldn’t have imagined living the way she was before and that the treatment has made her life much easier.

The Facts of the Matter

Urinating is a natural bodily function that most people take for granted, and it’s easy to see why. After all, it’s a task that we complete multiple times a day, every day, without even thinking about it.

However, for some individuals, the ability to urinate can be lost suddenly, and the impact of this can be catastrophic. This was the case for Elle Adams, a 30-year-old content creator from east London, who woke up one day in October 2020 unable to urinate.

This event marked the beginning of a long and painful journey for Adams, whose life was forever changed by the discovery of a rare condition called Fowler’s Syndrome.


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UK Woman’s Bladder Held 1 liter of Urine

Concerned that she was unable to pee despite hydrating herself, Adams went to the emergency room at St. Thomas Hospital in London and was told she had a liter of urine in her bladder. It should be noted that a typical bladder can only hold up to 500 ml of urine in women.

While Adams was given a catheter to drain the urine, she was made to take a daunting decision. She was asked that she can either attempt to urinate without the cathetur, and come to the hospital for re-evaluation. Or, she could keep the catheter and learn how to self-catheterize.

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One Decision That Changed Life

With all the confusion and concerns, Adams chose the latter, not knowing that it would change her life forever. Adams learnt how to self-catheterize, and for the next 14 months, wasn’t able to relieve herself normally.

After dealing with the painful ordeal of self-catheterization, she once again got herself checked, and was diagnosed with Fowler’s syndrome.

What is Fowler’s Syndrome

Fowler’s Syndrome, an uncommon condition that primarily affects young women and results in an inability to empty the bladder. The cause of the rare issue remains unknown, and it affects fewer than 1,000 people in the United States, making it an extremely rare disorder.

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SNS Procedure & The Life After

Adams underwent a urodynamics test, and the doctors told her that her “only option” was to undergo Sacral Nerve Stimulation (SNS). SNS is a procedure, which is similar to having a peacemaker.

Adams had her SNS operation in January 2023, after two years of suffering from Fowler’s Syndrome. “I couldn’t have imagined going on the way I was before. It was so draining, and it took over my life,” she said after undergoing the procedure.


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