OBJECTIVE: To assess a standardized and simple educational intervention in overactive bladder (OAB) patients to improve compliance with anticholinergic medication, increase the use of concomitant behavioral treatments, and improve patients' perception of bladder symptoms.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This is a 16-week open-label randomized trial of tolterodine combined with an education intervention for the experimental group versus tolterodine alone (no intervention) for the control group. The setting was in family medicine and urology clinics in Ontario. The participants were male and female adults with OAB symptoms. Both groups received tolterodine prescriptions. The intervention patients received printed information and an explanation about OAB, medication use, and behavioral treatments (kegel exercise, bladder stretching, fluid regulation). The primary outcomes were medication compliance and persistence at 16 weeks. Secondary outcomes were use of behavioral treatments and self-reported severity of symptoms.
RESULTS: More patients in the intervention group (experimental) purchased their prescriptions (p<0.05). Compliance rate was greater for the intervention group (39%), versus the control group (31%) at 16 weeks although the difference was not significant (p>0.05). Significantly more patients started and/or continued non-drug treatments in the intervention group (82%) compared to the control group (53%) (p<0.05). Furthermore, more patients in this group reported improvement in severity of bladder symptoms (p<0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: The simple education intervention resulted in a greater, but not significant, increase in compliance with medication compared to the control group. It also resulted in a significantly increased use of behavior modification therapies and better self-perception of treatment outcome.