November 3, 2005

Botox may calm overactive bladder

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - The anti-wrinkle injection
Botox, made of the botulinum toxin, appears to be a safe and
effective treatment in women with symptoms of overactive
bladder that is unresponsive to other approaches, according to
a small study by researchers in Scotland.

Botox has been used successful in patients with difficulty
controlling their bladders due to a spinal cord injury, but few
studies have examined this approach in people with overactive
bladder for which the cause is not known.

Therefore, Dr. Govindaraj M. Rajkumar and colleagues at the
Southern General Hospital in Glasgow prospectively studied 15
women who were given a single injection of Botox into the
bladder muscle.

Immediately after treatment all but one woman noted an
improvement in the classic and bothersome symptoms of urgency
and frequency. The volume at first urge to void increased
significantly in 13 women and the maximum bladder capacity
increased in 10.

The effects of a single injection of Botox seem to last for
between 20 and 24 weeks.

In 13 patients, symptoms returned to baseline at a mean of
24 weeks after treatment (range 10 to 52 weeks), the
researchers report.

The researchers also note that incontinence episodes
appeared to return to baseline levels much earlier than did
those involving frequency.

Nevertheless, the team concludes that the treatment is
safe, clinically effective and is "a viable alternative when
conventional therapies have failed to produce symptomatic

SOURCE: BJU International, October 2005.