ATLANTA—Patients with overactive bladder (OAB) say they are most bothered by symptoms of urinary urgency either as a primary complaint or as a driving symptom for frequency, according to a pilot study presented at the American Urological Association 2012 annual meeting

Benjamin Brucker, MD, and colleagues at the New York University Langone Medical Center in New York enrolled 102 OAB patients to examine the role of urinary urgency on frequency. Patients were assessed using a symptom bother scale and completed questionnaires to identify the most bothersome symptoms.

The study population consisted of 87 women (85.3%) and 15 men (14.7%) with a mean age of 67.4 years. Forty-six patients (45.1%) were on an anticholinergic (ACH), 44 (43.1%) had not been on an ACH in more than four weeks. The bothersome symptoms were identified as frequency (24.5%), urgency (23.5%), incontinence (24.5%), and nocturia (27.5%).

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Among patients who identified frequency as the most bothersome, 52% chose the International Continence Society definition of urgency as the underlying reason.

In addition, patients on an ACH identified frequency and nocturia as the most common bothersome symptom (34% each) while patients not on ACH identified urgency as the most common bothersome symptom (33%), with frequency being the most bothersome in only 15%.