Enhancing Electrical Neuromodulation of Bladder Function in Anesthetized Rats
Overactive bladder (OAB) is an incurable, chronic medical condition that is characterized by symptoms of urgency, frequency, nocturia and urinary incontinence. It affects approximately 18% of adults and over 30% of the elderly population. Saphenous nerve stimulation is a novel therapy aimed at treating OAB patients. It offers an alternative to bladder medication, which can have severe side effects such as dry mouth, cognitive impairments and hypertension. And, unlike sacral nerve stimulation, this novel treatment can be delivered to patients in a non-invasive manner. Recent clinical trials show that saphenous nerve stimulation can effectively reduce OAB symptoms in patients (e.g., 75% response rate), but there is still room for further improvements in clinical outcomes. The goal of this project is to investigate novel stimulation waveforms that further augment the bladder-inhibitory effects of saphenous nerve stimulation.