The two basic types of damage to the bladder by trauma are bruises and tears.
Blunt injury (a bruise) is damage caused by blows to the bladder. Penetrating injury (a tear) is damage caused by something piercing through the bladder.
Almost everyone who has a blunt injury to the bladder will see blood in the urine. Those with penetrating injury may not actually see bleeding. There may be pain below the belly button, but many times the pain from other injuries makes the bladder pain hard to notice. If there’s a large hole in the bladder and all of the urine leaks into the abdomen, it’s impossible to pass urine. In women, if the injury is severe enough, the vagina may be torn open as well as the bladder. If this happens, urine may leak from the bladder through the vagina. Blood may also come out of the vagina in this case.
Other symptoms may include:
- Hard to start urinating
- Weak urine stream
- Painful urination
- Severe back pain