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Incontinence & Overactive Bladder Health Center

Experimental Drug Targets Overactive Bladder

Mirabegron Is the First Drug in a New Class of OAB Medications
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Mirabegron Works Differently Than Other OAB Drugs continued...

The most common side effects seen with mirabegron were headache, high blood pressure, urinary infection, and upper respiratory infections.

After medications, some people with OAB turn to surgery or implantable neuromodulation devices that send mild electrical pulses to the nerve influencing bladder control muscles. Some urologists are also using botulinum toxin injections "off-label" to treat OAB. Off-label refers to drugs that are prescribed for conditions that haven't been approved by the FDA. Behavioral changes including diet changes and pelvic muscle exercises.

AUA spokesman Tomas L. Griebling, MD, MPH, the vice chair of urology at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan., tells WebMD that it “is pretty significant to have a new drug in a completely different class.”

He says that “there is very good data to show that significant OAB symptoms have a negative impact on quality of life and can be associated with depression, and [these symptoms] limit social activity, and people don’t go out of home or shopping or to the theater,” he says.  “If they have those problems and if they have tried other therapies that don’t work or developed side effects, this represents another alternative.”

OAB Affects Quality of Life

Donnica Moore, MD, a women's health expert and president of Sapphire Women's Health Group in Far Hills, N.J., agrees that untreated OAB can have a devastating effect on a person’s quality of life.

“People with mild OAB may be waking two or three times a night to use a toilet, and that means sleep is significantly disrupted,” she says. “If you have moderate to severe OAB, you may be going to the bathroom several times and hour, and you have to know where all bathrooms are at all times.”

“This becomes a huge issue of convenience, embarrassment, and social disruption,” she says.

“Any time a new treatment becomes available, it increases the number of choices we have to provide optimal therapy to more OAB patients,” she says.

This study was presented at a medical conference. The findings should be considered preliminary as they have not yet undergone the "peer review" process, in which outside experts scrutinize the data prior to publication in a medical journal.

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