Sacral Neuromodulation in Patients with Idiopathic Overactive Bladder after Initial Botulinum Toxin Therapy

Martijn A. C. Smits*, Dennis Oerlemans, Tom A. T. Marcelissen, Philip E. V. Van Kerrebroeck, Stefan G. G. De Wachter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Purpose: We evaluated whether patients with overactive bladder and incontinence who discontinued intravesical botulinum toxin therapy can be successfully treated with sacral neuromodulation. Materials and methods: All patients who were referred to our center after discontinuation of botulinum toxin-A between 2005 and 2010 were included in this observational study. All patients underwent test stimulation with sacral neuromodulation and were evaluated with voiding diaries. Success was defined as more than 50% improvement in leakage episodes. Successful test stimulation was subsequently followed by a definitive implant. Patient satisfaction with sacral neuromodulation therapy was evaluated 1 year after the definitive implant. Results: A total of 20 patients were included in the study. Of these patients 17 (85%) had discontinued botulinum toxin-A because of lack of efficacy and 3 had been treated successfully with botulinum toxin-A but requested a more permanent solution. The mean interval between the botulinum toxin-A and the sacral neuromodulation test stimulation was 23 months. In 14 patients (70%) the test stimulation was successful and they received a definitive implant. Of the 14 patients 5 even showed a decrease of greater than 90% in leakage episodes. One year after implantation 11 patients (79%) were satisfied with the sacral neuromodulation treatment. Conclusions: Despite the small sample size, this study indicates that patients who are dissatisfied with or in whom botulinum toxin-A treatment fails can respond successfully to sacral neuromodulation. The success rate of the test stimulation was comparable to that of patients who have never been treated with botulinum toxin-A. The 1-year satisfaction rate was comparable that of patients without a history of botulinum toxin-A treatment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2148-2152
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


  • botulinum toxins
  • urinary bladder, overactive
  • urinary incontinence, urge


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