Efficacy of Electrical Pudendal Nerve Stimulation versus Transvaginal Electrical Stimulation in Treating Female Idiopathic Urgency Urinary Incontinence

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Abstract

Purpose:

We compared the efficacy of electrical pudendal nerve stimulation vs transvaginal electrical stimulation to treat female idiopathic urgency urinary incontinence.

Materials and Methods:

A total of 120 female patients with idiopathic urgency urinary incontinence refractory to medication were randomized at a ratio of 2:1 to group 1 of 80 patients and group 2 of 40. Groups 1 and 2 were treated with electrical pudendal nerve stimulation and transvaginal electrical stimulation, respectively. To perform electrical pudendal nerve stimulation long acupuncture needles were deeply inserted into 4 sacrococcygeal points and electrified to stimulate pudendal nerves. Outcome measures were the 24-hour pad test and a questionnaire to measure the severity of symptoms and quality of life in women with urgency urinary incontinence.

Results:

The median severity of symptoms and quality of life score on the urgency urinary incontinence questionnaire (urgency urinary incontinence total score) was 13 (range 7 to 18.75) in group 1 and 11 (range 8 to 16) in group 2 before treatment, which decreased to 2 (range 0 to 6.75) in group 1 and 6.5 (range 3.25 to 10.75) in group 2 (both p <0.01) after the completion of treatment. At the end of treatment in group 1 complete symptom resolution was noted in 34 patients (42.5%), with a 50% or greater symptom improvement rate in 70.1%. In group 2 complete symptom resolution was noted in 1 patient (2.5%) with a 50% or greater symptom improvement rate in 45.0%. The posttreatment urgency urinary incontinence total score was lower and the therapeutic effect was better in group 1 than in group 2 (both p <0.01).

Conclusions:

Electrical pudendal nerve stimulation is more effective than transvaginal electrical stimulation in treating drug refractory, female idiopathic urgency urinary incontinence.

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