Investigate the presence of nonbladder sensory abnormalities in participants with overactive bladder (OAB) syndrome.
Symptoms of Lower Urinary Tract Dysfunction Research Network (LURN) study participants with OAB symptoms and controls were recruited from six US tertiary referral centers. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) was performed to determine pressure pain sensitivity at the thumbnail bed and auditory sensitivity. Fixed and mixed effect multivariable linear regressions and Weibull models were used to compare QST responses between groups. Pearson correlations were used to assess the relationship between QST measures. Associations between QST and self-reported symptoms were explored with linear regression.
297 participants were analyzed (191 OAB, 106 controls; 76% white, 51% male). OAB cases were older than controls (57.4 vs. 52.2 years, p=0.015). No significant differences in experimental thumbnail (nonbladder) pain or auditory sensitivity were detected between OAB cases and controls. Correlations between pressure and auditory derived metrics were weak to moderate overall for both groups, with some significantly stronger correlations for cases. Exploratory analyses indicated increased pressure pain and auditory sensitivity were modestly associated with greater self-reported bladder pain and pain interference with physical function.
As a group, no significant differences between OAB cases and controls were observed in experimental nonbladder pain or auditory sensitivity during QST. Associations between QST outcomes and clinical pain raise the possibility of centrally-mediated sensory amplification in some individuals with OAB.
The Journal of urology. 2021 Aug 25 [Epub ahead of print]
Steven E Harte, Jon Wiseman, Ying Wang, Abigail R Smith, Claire C Yang, Margaret Helmuth, Karl Kreder, Grant H Kruger, Brenda W Gillespie, Cindy Amundsen, Ziya Kirkali, H Henry Lai
Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research Center, Department of Anesthesiology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan., Arbor Research Collaborative for Health, Ann Arbor, Michigan., Department of Anesthesia, Stark Neuroscience Research Institute, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana., Department of Urology, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington., Department of Urology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa., Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina., National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland., Division of Urologic Surgery, Departments of Surgery and Anesthesiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Missouri.