Feasibility of using a novel non-invasive ambulatory tibial nerve stimulation device for the home-based treatment of overactive bladder symptoms.

To evaluate safety, acceptability and pilot efficacy of transcutaneous low-frequency tibial nerve stimulation (TNS) using a novel device as home-based neuromodulation.

In this single-centre pilot study, 48 patients with overactive bladder (OAB) (24 with neurogenic and 24 with idiopathic OAB) were randomized to use a self-applicating ambulatory skin-adhering device stimulating transcutaneously the tibial nerve at 1 Hz for 30 minutes, either once daily or once weekly, for 12 weeks. Changes in OAB symptoms and QoL were measured at baseline, weeks 4, 8, and 12 using validated scoring instruments (ICIQ-OAB and ICIQ-LUTSqol), 3-day bladder diary and a Global Response Assessment (GRA) at week 12.

Thirty-four patients completed the study (idiopathic n=15, neurogenic n=19). No significant adverse effects were noted. Patients found the device acceptable. Eighteen patients (53%) reported a moderate or marked improvement in symptoms from the GRA. Between baseline and week-12, ICIQ-OAB part A sub-scores improved from mean (SD) 9.3 (2.5) to 7.5 (3.1), and from 9.1 (1.9) to 5.9 (1.7) in the daily and the weekly arms, respectively. ICIQ-LUTSqol part A sub-scores improved from mean (SD) 51 (12.8) to 44.2 (13.1) and 44.9 (9.0) to 35.9 (8.8) in the daily and the weekly arms, respectively. Bladder diary mean 24-hour frequency episodes improved from 11.5 to 8.8 at week 12 for both arms.

This novel ambulatory transcutaneous TNS (TTNS) device is safe and acceptable for use in patients reporting OAB symptoms as a form of home-based neuromodulation. A larger study however is required to confirm clinical efficacy.

Translational andrology and urology. 2018 Dec [Epub]

Jai H Seth, Gwen Gonzales, Collette Haslam, Mahreen Pakzad, Arvind Vashisht, Arun Sahai, Charles Knowles, Arthur Tucker, Jalesh Panicker

Department of Uro-Neurology, The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and UCL Institute of Neurology, London, UK., Department of Uro-gynaecology, University College Hospital, London, UK., Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, Kings College London, London, UK., Barts & The London SMD, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK.