Tibial nerve stimulation reduces OAB symptoms

Overactive bladder? Nerve stimulation may help.

Gotta go a lot? Patients with an overactive bladder (OAB) saw a reduction in their symptoms while using tibial nerve stimulation in a study conducted by the Beaumont Health System in Detroit. OAB is characterized by urinary urgency, frequency and involuntary loss of urine.

Researchers reviewed the data of patients who initially responded to 12 weekly treatments, and followed them for three years. Participants received on average one tibial nerve treatment per month following initial therapy. Each treatment session lasts about 30 minutes.

In this outpatient procedure, a thin and tiny electrode is inserted in the ankle by the tibial nerve. The electrode transports electric impulses from a hand-held stimulator to the nerve in the spinal cord that affect bladder function. No permanent lead or stimulator is implanted.

Study participants had less urinary frequency during the day and night as well as urinary urgency.

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