Science Current Events | Science News | Brightsurf.com
 

The concept of 'overactive bladder' serves better commercial rather than patient interests

January 16, 2012
"The overactive bladder syndrome has become an accepted way to simplify a complex array of symptoms and leads people to believe that an overactive bladder is an independent disease in itself. However, the truth is not as simple as this, as there are usually several factors at work explaining the symptoms. This is also one of the reasons why so called overactive bladder medications often do not bring the hoped result," says Kari Tikkinen, MD, PhD, from the HUCS Department of Urology.

The article on overactive bladder syndrome, which was co-written by Tikkinen, who currently holds a senior researcher post at the McMaster University in Canada, and Anssi Auvinen, Professor of Epidemiology from the University of Tampere, was recently published in the European Urology journal. For the article, the researchers systematically reviewed the studies on overactive bladder and the channels through which these studies have been funded.

The authors argue that the symptoms of an 'overactive bladder' ought to be studied individually and not as an ambiguous constellation of symptoms. This way the underlying causes of the symptoms can be better understood and more effective treatments can be developed.

The expression 'overactive bladder' was coined at an industry-sponsored symposium held in 1997. The following year, the FDA approved the first drug for the treatment of 'symptoms of overactive bladder', after which the pharmaceutical industry launched high-profile, worldwide promotional campaigns for drugs aimed at treatment of the syndrome.

According to the current definition, overactive bladder (OAB) syndrome is defined as the presence of urinary urgency with or without urgency incontinence, usually with increased daytime frequency and nocturia in the absence of infection or other obvious pathology.

"The definition is vague and ambiguous because it includes unspecific terms, such as 'usually' and 'with or without', and the unclear expression 'other obvious pathology'," Tikkinen says and continues, "For the pharmaceutical industry this definition is probably quite useful, as it is partly the reason why one medicine can be prescribed to a large number of patients."

Research into overactive bladder has increased significantly over the past ten years and the pharmaceutical industry has invested heavily in it. "It has previously been shown that research funded by commercial actors often ends up unpublished if the results don't serve the interests of the company," Tikkinen points out.

Tikkinen and Auvinen also bring to the fore that in many studies on prevalence of overactive bladder, very mild symptoms have been classified as abnormal.

"More independent, non-commercially funded research on the subject is needed. There are, in the end, a huge number of people who suffer from urinary urgency and increased urinary frequency, and current treatments are not bringing sufficient relief," Tikkinen says.

University of Helsinki


Related Overactive Bladder Current Events and Overactive Bladder News Articles


Study debunks common misconception that urine is sterile
Bacteria have been discovered in the bladders of healthy women, discrediting the common belief that normal urine is sterile.

Myelin-maker: How an FDA-approved drug boosts myelin synthesis
Damage to myelin, the fatty insulator that enables communication between nerve cells, characterizes multiple sclerosis (MS) and other devastating neurological diseases.

Afferent's P2X3 inhibitor shows 75 percent reduction in chronic cough frequency
Afferent Pharmaceuticals today announced publication of results from a Phase 2 clinical trial demonstrating that the company's novel drug candidate, AF-219, reduced daytime cough frequency by 75% compared to placebo in patients with treatment-refractory chronic cough.

Clock gene dysregulation may explain overactive bladder
If you think sleep problems and bladder problems are a fact of life in old age, you may be right. A new report appearing in the November 2014 issue of The FASEB Journal, shows that our sleep-wake cycles are genetically connected to our bladder, and disruptions to one may cause problems with the other.

Transplanted stem cells help prevent bladder fibrosis after spinal cord injury
A team of researchers from Korea and Canada have found that transplantation of B10 cells (a stable immortalized human bone marrow derived -mesenchymal stem cell line; B10 hMSC) directly into the bladder wall of mice modeled with spinal cord injury (SCI) helped inhibit the development of bladder fibrosis and improved bladder function by promoting the growth of smooth muscle cells in the bladder.

Mirabegron for overactive bladder: added benefit not proven
Mirabegron (trade name: Betmiga) has been approved since December 2012 for the treatment of adults with overactive bladder.

Study debunks common myth that urine is sterile
Bacteria live in the bladders of healthy women, discrediting the common belief that normal urine is sterile. This finding was presented today by researchers from Loyola University Chicago at the 114th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Boston.

Bacteria in urine could contribute to overactive bladder
Contrary to popular belief, urine is not sterile and the bacteria in it may be associated with overactive bladder (OAB) in some women, according to research presented today at the annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology.

Beaumont study: Nerve stimulation helps with overactive bladder
Beaumont Health System research finds that symptoms of overactive bladder, or OAB, were reduced in those who received tibial nerve stimulation.

Study uncovers new cells in the urethra which may detect hazardous substances
A recent study conducted by a group of German scientists revealed the presence of a previously unknown cell in the urethra of mice.
More Overactive Bladder Current Events and Overactive Bladder News Articles

© 2015 BrightSurf.com