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Eur Urol. 2005 Jul;48(1):110-5. Epub 2004 Dec 15.

Comparison of symptom severity and treatment response in patients with incontinent and continent overactive bladder.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Meibergdreef 15, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



Two thirds of patients with overactive bladder (OAB) are continent, but our knowledge on the treatment of the syndrome is largely based on studies with incontinent patients. Therefore, we have explored baseline symptoms and treatment responses to tolterodine in continent relative to incontinent OAB patients.


Data from an open-label, observational study involving 3824 patients with OAB symptoms were analyzed for baseline symptoms and alterations thereof upon a 9 months treatment with 4 mg q.d. tolterodine ER.


Baseline symptoms (number of urgency episodes, total urination frequency, daytime frequency, nocturia, and three scales of OAB severity) were similar in 1147 continent and 2571 incontinent patients, the latter having 4.8+/-3.7 incontinence episodes per 24 h. Tolterodine ER-induced reduction of OAB symptoms was very similar in both groups of patients.


The severity of OAB in continent patients can be similar to that in incontinent ones. Symptom improvement upon treatment with tolterodine ER is very similar in both groups. We propose that continent patients may similarly deserve treatment with a muscarinic receptor antagonist as incontinent ones.

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