Intravaginal electrical stimulation: a randomized, double-blind study on the treatment of mixed urinary incontinence

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Background.The aim of this study was to compare effective and sham intravaginal electrical stimulation (IES) in treating mixed urinary incontinence.Methods.Between January 2001 and February 2002, 40 women were randomly distributed, in a double-blind study, into two groups: group G1 (n=20), effective IES, and group G2 (n = 20), sham IES, with follow up at one month. Different parameters was studied: 1. clinical questionnaire; 2. body mass index; 3. 60-min pad test; 4. urodynamic study. The protocol of IES consisted of three 20-min sessions per week over a seven-week period. The Dualpex Uro 996 used a frequency of 4 Hz.Results.There was no statistically significant difference in the demographic data of both groups. The number of micturitions per 24 h after treatment was reduced significantly in both groups. Urge incontinence was reduced to 15% in G1 and 31.5% in G2; there was no significant difference between the groups. In the analog wetness and discomfort sensation evaluations were reduced significantly in both groups. The pretreatment urodynamic study showed no statistical difference in urodynamic parameters between the groups. Ten percent of the women presented involuntary detrusor contractions. In the 60-min pad test, there was a significant reduction in both groups. In regards to satisfaction level, after treatment, 80% of G1 patients and 65% of G2 patients were satisfied. There was no statistically significant difference between the groups.Conclusion.Significant improvement was provided by effective and sham electrostimulation, questioning the effectiveness of electrostimulation as a monotherapy.

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