Publications by authors named "George Araklitis"

20 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Healthcare professional's choice for surgical management of stress urinary incontinence in a U.K. tertiary hospital.

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 2021 Aug 24;263:7-14. Epub 2021 May 24.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Objective: In July 2018, NHS England, introduced a pause on vaginal mesh, including the mid-urethral sling (MUS) for treatment of stress urinary incontinence (SUI). NICE guidelines recommend MUS as one of the surgical options for SUI. The aim of our study was to investigate healthcare professionals choices for surgical treatment of SUI, if conservative measures failed.

Study Design: The urogynaecology department at our tertiary level hospital devised a questionnaire using SurveyMonkey. This was distributed via email to 1058 healthcare professionals of different medical backgrounds. The surgical options were based on the NICE guideline and its patient decision making aid. We also used surgical information from the British society of Urogynaecology (BSUG) and British association of urological surgeons (BAUS).

Results: We received 214 responses of which 204 were complete. Twenty six percent of replies were from obstetricians and gynaecologists, 36 % had over 20 years experience and 79 % were female. Forty four percent had no previous knowledge of surgical options. Mid-urethral sling was the most popular choice based on description, success and specific complications. Urethral bulking agent was the only option that increased in popularity after describing complications. Twenty two percent would avoid surgery due to the risk of complications.

Conclusion: This is the first study evaluating healthcare professionals surgical choice for SUI. Despite negative media publicity and NHS pause on MUS, it was still the most popular choice before and after informing of specific complications. The urethral bulking agent was the only surgical treatment, which increased in popularity after considering complications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejogrb.2021.05.039DOI Listing
August 2021

Modern management of genitourinary syndrome of menopause.

Fac Rev 2021 3;10:25. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

The genitourinary syndrome of menopause (GSM) is the accepted term used to describe the broad spectrum of genitourinary tract symptoms and signs caused by the loss of endogenous sex steroids that occurs at the time of and after the menopause. Global improvements in healthcare have resulted in an ageing population. Today, women are spending 40% of their lives in the postmenopausal state, and with 50-70% of postmenopausal women reporting symptomatic GSM, safe and efficacious treatments are needed for this troublesome condition. This article reviews current evidence for non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatments with a focus on novel and minimally invasive procedures such as energy-based devices (CO laser, YAG laser), hyaluronic acid, dehydroepiandrosterone, and selective oestrogen receptor modulators.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12703/r/10-25DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7946389PMC
March 2021

Pharmacist's knowledge regarding the management of overactive bladder in elderly women.

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 2021 Mar 16;258:269-272. Epub 2021 Jan 16.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Objective: Anticholinergic drugs are the mainstay treatment of OAB. Anticholinergic load is the cumulative effect of taking anticholinergic medication. Recent evidence suggests that in the elderly this can have a detrimental affect, with the potential to develop dementia. A previous study found that knowledge of anticholinergic load was lacking in our healthcare professionals. The aim of this study was to assess knowledge of pharmacists, who in the UK have the potential where qualified to prescribe as well as dispense.

Study Design: A questionnaire was formulated based on the previous study. It was sent out to 418 pharmacists from; a south London hospital trust, a south London clinical commissioning group and United Kingdom Clinical Pharmacists Association.

Results: Seventy-five pharmacists completed the questionnaire. Solifenacin and tolterodine was the most popular drug prescribed in the elderly without dementia, whilst mirabegron was the most popular in the elderly with dementia. One pharmacist suggested using oxybutynin. Sixty-two percent discuss anticholinergic load with the patients, 40 % advice prescribers and 42 % consider anticholinergic load when dispensing the drug. Fifteen percent have had patients report confusion/memory loss. Thirty percent know how to assess anticholinergic load. Only 15 % felt dementia was a concern with anticholinergic drugs. Worryingly, 54 % though mirabegron exerted anticholinergic effects.

Conclusion: This is the first study looking at pharmacist knowledge on the use of anticholinergic medication for OAB in elderly women. Knowledge amongst all healthcare professionals including pharmacists is lacking and needs to be improved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejogrb.2021.01.021DOI Listing
March 2021

Urethral bulking agent found in a urethral caruncle which did not respond to topical oestrogens: A case report.

Case Rep Womens Health 2020 Oct 27;28:e00268. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

Department of Urogynaecology, Suite 8, Golden Jubilee Wing, King's College Hospital, SE5 9RS, UK.

Background: Urethral caruncles are lesions occurring at the urethral orifice, around the posterior lip of the urethra. They are the most common benign growth of the female urethra. They are often asymptomatic and found incidentally on clinical examination. When symptomatic they commonly present with bleeding. Treatment includes vaginal oestrogens or, failing that, surgical excision. We present an unusual finding after excision of a urethral caruncle.

Case: A patient with a background of stress urinary incontinence had numerous pelvic surgeries, including colposuspension, tension-free vaginal tape (TVT) and Macroplastique (a urethral bulking agent). She developed bleeding from a 3 cm urethral caruncle, which did not improve with vaginal oestrogens. She proceeded to have a surgical excision of the caruncle. Histology revealed a foreign material with surrounding foreign-body-type multinucleate giant cell reaction. The material was compatible with Macroplastique.

Conclusion: This case report describes an unusual and unexpected histological finding. Macroplastique is injected in the urethra, 10-15 mm from the bladder neck. We suspect the caruncle dragged the Macroplastique material out through the urethral meatus. If urethral caruncles are not adequately treated with vaginal oestrogens, surgery should be considered.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.crwh.2020.e00268DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7609486PMC
October 2020

Vaginal mesh: What lessons have we learnt?

Case Rep Womens Health 2020 Oct 5;28:e00258. Epub 2020 Oct 5.

Department of Urogynaecology, Kings College Hospital, United Kingdom.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.crwh.2020.e00258DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7559854PMC
October 2020

Practice observed in managing gynaecological problems in post-menopausal women during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Post Reprod Health 2020 Dec 30;26(4):227-228. Epub 2020 Sep 30.

King's College Hospital, King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.

The way in which gynaecology services are provided in the UK has drastically changed within a short space of time due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Gynaecologists are not considered front-line staff in the treatment of the novel coronavirus unlike our intensive care or accident and emergency colleagues. However, the impact this is having on those with chronic problems is significant, and the morbidity associated with missed malignancies could be problematic. This article summarises the strategies developed at King's College Hospital to remodel services to best provide optimum treatment to patients in this new era.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2053369120957540DOI Listing
December 2020

Recent advances in managing overactive bladder.

F1000Res 2020 11;9. Epub 2020 Sep 11.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Overactive bladder syndrome (OAB) is defined as urinary urgency, usually accompanied by frequency and nocturia, with or without urgency incontinence, in the absence of urinary tract infection or other obvious pathology. In this review, we focus on recent advances in the management of OAB. We examine the evidence on the effect of anticholinergic load on OAB patients. Advances in medical treatment include a new beta-3 agonist, vibegron, which is thought to have fewer drug interactions than mirabegron. Treatment of genitourinary syndrome of the menopause with oestrogens and ospemifene have also shown promise for OAB. Botulinum toxin has been shown to be an effective treatment option. We discuss the new implantable neuromodulators that are on the market as well as selective bladder denervation and laser technology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.26607.1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7489273PMC
February 2021

An unusual late complication with tension-free vaginal tape (TVT): A case report.

Case Rep Womens Health 2020 Oct 25;28:e00252. Epub 2020 Aug 25.

Department of Urogynaecology, Suite 8, Golden Jubilee Wing, King's College Hospital, London SE5 9RS, UK.

Background: Stress urinary incontinence is a common problem affecting women's quality of life. The retropubic mid-urethral sling accounts for the majority of surgical interventions for stress incontinence. Complications of the procedure are rare. We present an unusual late complication with tension-free vaginal tape (TVT).

Case: Two years after insertion of a TVT for stress incontinence, a patient noticed a foreign body intermittently exiting through her anus. Initial clinical examinations and investigations were unremarkable. Five years after insertion she represented with faecal matter in the vagina and a TVT erosion. Imaging confirmed a colo-vaginal fistula. She underwent a vaginal excision of the TVT but this did not cure her problem and she subsequently had a laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy. Thereafter she remained well and asymptomatic.

Conclusion: This case report describes an unusual late complication. It is likely that the left arm of the mesh entered the serosa of the sigmoid colon and eroded into it over time. Complications associated with TVT are rare, but when they occur they need to be recorded. Only surgeons who have experience and expertise in the procedure should perform it, such as subspecialty trained urogynaecologists.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.crwh.2020.e00252DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7479271PMC
October 2020

Cognitive Effects of Anticholinergic Load in Women with Overactive Bladder.

Clin Interv Aging 2020 25;15:1493-1503. Epub 2020 Aug 25.

Urogynaecology Department, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Overactive bladder syndrome (OAB) is defined as urinary urgency, usually accompanied by frequency and nocturia, with or without urgency incontinence, in the absence of urinary tract infection or other obvious pathology. The mainstay of treatment of OAB is anticholinergic/antimuscarinic medication. These drugs block muscarinic receptors throughout the body, not only the bladder, including in the brain, which may lead to cognitive side effects. Anticholinergic load or burden is the cumulative effect of taking drugs that are capable of producing anticholinergic adverse effects. The elderly are more susceptible to these effects, especially as there is increased permeability of the blood brain barrier. The anticholinergic drugs for OAB are able to enter the central nervous system and lead to central side effects. There is increasing evidence that a high anticholinergic load is linked to the development of cognitive impairment and even dementia. Some studies have found an increased risk of mortality. In view of this, care is needed when treating OAB in the elderly. Trospium chloride is a quaternary amine anticholinergic, which has a molecular structure, which theoretically means it is less likely to cross the blood brain barrier and exert central side effects. Alternatively, mirabegron can be used, which is a beta-3 adrenoceptor agonist, which does not add to the anticholinergic load or exert central nervous system side effects. Conservative therapy can be used as an alternative to pharmacological treatment in the form of behavioral modification, fluid management and bladder retraining. Neuromodulation or the use of botox can also be alternatives, but success may be less in the older adult and will require increased hospital attendances.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/CIA.S252852DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7457731PMC
December 2020

The cognitive safety of antimuscarinics in the treatment of overactive bladder.

Expert Opin Drug Saf 2020 Oct 8;19(10):1303-1313. Epub 2020 Sep 8.

Urogynaecology Department, King's College Hospital , London, UK.

Introduction: Overactive bladder is a common problem women suffer from, with its incidence increasing with age. The mainstay of treatment is antimuscarinic medication. There is growing evidence that antimuscarinics may increase the risk of cognitive impairment, dementia, and even death.

Areas Covered: This review explores the evidence that antimuscarinics increase the risk of cognitive impairment, dementia, and death. It evaluates how best to treat overactive bladder the older woman.

Expert Opinion: The evidence suggests that antimuscarinics increase the risk of cognitive impairment and dementia in the older adult. Care should be taken to use an antimuscarinic that is less likely to cross the blood-brain barrier and thus reduce the risk of these significant adverse events. A patient's anticholinergic load also needs to be considered when treating this group. Other treatment options such as fluid management, bladder retraining, vaginal estrogens, mirabegron, Onabotulinum toxin A and neuromodulation can be used instead.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14740338.2020.1817377DOI Listing
October 2020

Recent advances in urodynamics in women.

F1000Res 2020 15;9. Epub 2020 Jun 15.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Urodynamics is the study of the storage and evacuation of urine from the urinary tract. The aim is to reproduce the patient's symptoms and provide a pathophysiological explanation for them by identifying all factors that contribute to the lower urinary tract dysfunction, including those that are asymptomatic. Urodynamics consists of various tests, each of which is designed to assess a different aspect of lower urinary tract function. There is a lack of evidence regarding when urodynamics should be used in the non-neurogenic bladder. Some small randomised controlled trials suggest that urodynamics does not alter the outcome of surgery for stress urinary incontinence when compared with office evaluation alone. However, this is widely felt to be inaccurate and many health-care professionals still advocate the use of urodynamics prior to any invasive treatment, especially surgery on the lower urinary tract. There have been few technological advances in urodynamics in recent years. Air-charged rather than fluid-filled catheters were thought to help reduce artefact, but the evidence is unclear, and there is doubt over their accuracy. Ambulatory urodynamics is carried out over a longer period of time, enabling physiological bladder filling, but it remains invasive and artificial. To attempt to replicate symptoms more accurately, there have been efforts to develop wireless devices to measure detrusor pressure directly. These may be promising but are far from suitable in humans at present. Urodynamics continues to provide useful information for assessing lower urinary tract function, but further large studies are required to assess its value and develop innovations to improve the accuracy of the tests and acceptability to patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.24640.1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7308832PMC
October 2020

Is there enough evidence to justify the use of laser and other thermal therapies in female lower urinary tract dysfunction? Report from the ICI-RS 2019.

Neurourol Urodyn 2020 07 10;39 Suppl 3:S140-S147. Epub 2020 Feb 10.

Department of Urogynaecology, Kings College Hospital, London, UK.

Aims: There is increasing evidence to suggest that thermomodulation may have a role in the management of women with lower urinary tract dysfunction (LUTD) and there has been widespread adoption of laser and radiofrequency (RF) therapies within clinical practice. However, in many areas of LUTD, the data are still limited and there remains a need for further evaluation of the safety and efficacy of thermal therapy. The aim of this study proposal is to report the findings of the International Consultation on Incontinence Research Society to clarify our current knowledge regarding the evidence for thermal therapy in LUTD and to set research priorities for the future.

Methods: Literature review based on the search terms: "laser," "radiofrequency," "genitourinary syndrome of the menopause" or "urogenital atrophy," "stress urinary incontinence (SUI)," "pelvic organ prolapse," "OAB" or "overactive bladder," and "urinary tract infection."

Results: The current available evidence, though of low or very low quality, appears promising for the use of laser therapy in the management of genitourinary syndrome of the menopause, there are some data to suggest a possible role in SUI although very little evidence for urogenital prolapse. At present, the evidence supporting the use of laser in OAB and recurrent urinary tract infection is limited or lacking, while the available evidence for RF in the management of all forms of LUTD is much less robust.

Conclusions: Laser and RF are being introduced clinically as a minimally invasive, low-risk interventions for women with LUTD although at present, the evidence supporting usage is limited. Consequently, there is an urgent need to demonstrate the safety and efficacy with prospective long-term studies including sham studies and comparative studies with current standard therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/nau.24298DOI Listing
July 2020

What affects the placebo effect?

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 2020 Mar 22;246:134-137. Epub 2020 Jan 22.

King's College Hospital, Denmark Hill, London, SE5 9RS, UK.

Objective: To determine whether electronic bladder diaries are associated with a larger placebo effect than paper diaries in studies of overactive bladder (OAB). To identify any other factors in study design that may influence the placebo effect.

Study Design: This is a secondary analysis of a previous systematic review and network meta-analysis on the efficacy and tolerability of mirabegron. Each study was analysed and placebo response rate (PRR) was calculated. Statistical analysis was used to look for associations with different factors and PRR.

Results: The PRR was considerable in the studies analysed (10.5 % when calculated for change in number of micturitions over 24 h and 41.2 % for change in urgency urinary incontinence episodes over 24 h). Paper bladder diaries were associated with a significantly larger placebo response rate than electronic (10.76 % vs 10.22 %), although this may be clinically small. The size of study had a moderate positive correlation with PRR. Length of bladder diary was not associated with increased PRR.

Conclusions: The PRR in studies of OAB is varied and significant. It is clear that it can be affected by factors in study design including type of bladder diary. When designing clinical studies this should be borne in mind. Equally, when attempting to optimise patient care, the benefit of the therapeutic encounter should be remembered.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejogrb.2020.01.023DOI Listing
March 2020

Anticholinergic therapy: A case-based approach.

Case Rep Womens Health 2020 Jan 19;25:e00164. Epub 2019 Nov 19.

Department of Urogynaecology, Kings College Hospital, London, UK.

Anticholinergic medication remains integral in the management of women with Overactive Bladder syndrome although there is increasing evidence to support a link with the impairment of cognitive function. This editorial will review the available evidence and discuss the management of patients in order to minimise anticholinergic burden with a particular focus on the elderly.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.crwh.2019.e00164DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6906708PMC
January 2020

Can we replace the catheter when evaluating urinary residuals?

Neurourol Urodyn 2019 04 7;38(4):1100-1105. Epub 2019 Mar 7.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Aims: To test the different formulae to calculate the bladder volume using ultrasound; the accuracy of patients hearing/feeling "bubbles" at the end of urodynamics testing as a measure of being empty; and how good we are at estimating PVR using X-ray at the end of video urodynamics testing.

Methods: This was a prospective cohort study. Using Sonosite 180 plus, bladder volumes were calculated as, height × width × depth × proportionality constant (0.52, 0.625, 0.65, and 0.7) Patients were asked whether the patient heard or felt "bubbles" at the end of the investigation. Each patient was fluoroscopically screened and the clinician estimated the volume and compared with single-use catheter volume.

Results: A total of 85 patients were assessed. All four formulae were significantly correlated. The PC, 0.52, correlated best (r = 0.938, P < 0.001) with no significant difference with the actual volumes ( P = 0.275). The "bubbles test" had a positive predictive value of 93%. A video postvoid residual (PVR) estimation significantly correlated with catheterised bladder volume ( r = 0.842, P < 0.001). There was no significant difference between the estimated and actual bladder volumes ( P = 0.579).

Conclusion: This study showed that although all four formulae correlated significantly, the PC of 0.52 was the only formula without a significant difference from the actual volume. More work is needed to produce patient individualised PC. Our clinicians were able to accurately estimate the PVR on X-ray. This study has identified the best formula to accurately estimate bladder volume and that video estimation along with the "bubbles" test can avoid unnecessary intervention.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/nau.23963DOI Listing
April 2019

Does assessing urethral function allow the selection of the optimal therapy for recurrent SUI? Report from the ICI-RS 2017.

Neurourol Urodyn 2018 06;37(S4):S69-S74

Professor of Urogynaecology, Kings College Hospital, London, UK.

Aims: The management of recurrent stress urinary incontinence following failed previous continence surgery remains challenging. Whilst the role of urodynamic investigations has been questioned in the management of primary stress incontinence there is a widely held view that women with recurrent symptoms require further investigation although there is no agreement regarding which tests are required. We sought to understand what testing is recommended prior to managing this difficult cohort of patients.

Method: This research proposal was presented at the International Consultation on Incontinence Research Society (ICI-RS) in order to clarify our current knowledge regarding the assessment of urethral function and to set research priorities for the future.

Results: Whilst the majority of clinicians would advocate urodynamic evaluation of women with recurrent stress incontinence following previous surgery there is no consensus of opinion as to which tests should be performed, on whom or where. The available evidence to date suggests that urethral function tests do have a role with regard to prognosis following surgery and also in planning the most appropriate surgical intervention.

Conclusion: The ICI-RS developed a list of research questions which may be able to assist in improving the investigation and management of women with recurrent SUI. Questions included whether patients felt the information gained via urethral function tests had an important role in their counseling regarding outcome of repeat SUI surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/nau.23588DOI Listing
June 2018

Laparoscopic mesh repair of a labial hernia.

Neurourol Urodyn 2018 03 13;37(3):1178-1179. Epub 2017 Nov 13.

King's College Hospital, London, England.

Aims: To present a narrated video designed to demonstrate the steps involved in a laparoscopic mesh repair of a labial hernia.

Methods: This was in a 76-year-old woman who presented with a small bowel hernia in to her left labium majus. In 2014 she had a robotically assisted radical cystectomy for bladder cancer with anterior exenteration. She developed the hernia in February 2015 and initially a vaginal approach was attempted to repair the hernia (with layered non-absorbable sutures to close the fascia over the defect) at her local hospital, although this was unsuccessful. A laparoscopic repair with mesh on the 10 May 2016 was undertaken at our unit.

Results: This was a complex case requiring a multi disciplinary approach and individualised care. The need for a mesh was obvious: however, the use of both synthetic and biological meshes to achieve an optimum result was unique and highly successful.

Conclusion: In this instance a minimally invasive laparoscopic approach where initial adhesiolysis was performed and then a synthetic mesh sandwiched in between two biological porcine meshes provided a unique management solution. The patient was seen 8 weeks post operatively and at 14 months after the procedure. She had complete resolution of her symptoms with no residual hernia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/nau.23440DOI Listing
March 2018

Narrated video demonstrating the procedure of videourodynamics.

Neurourol Urodyn 2018 03 11;37(3):1176-1177. Epub 2017 Nov 11.

King's College Hospital, London, England.

Aims: To present a narrated video designed to demonstrate the steps involved in the procedure of videourodynamics.

Methods: The technique shown and described in this teaching video is that performed in the urogynaecology Department at King's College Hospital, London. The equipment utilizes fluid filled lines and external pressure transducers which provide accurate and consistent results.

Results: The advantage of videocystourolodraphy is that as well as incorporating screening fluoroscopy with a cystometric trace, simultaneous assessment of lower urinary tract anatomy and morphology and function is possible.

Conclusion: Videourodynamics or videocystourogrpahy is a diagnostic tool that incorporates urodynamics with imaging of the lower urinary tract which occurs simultaneously. Thus both functional anatomy and physiology can be assessed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/nau.23437DOI Listing
March 2018

Safety issues associated with using medication to treat overactive bladder.

Expert Opin Drug Saf 2017 Nov 10;16(11):1273-1280. Epub 2017 Sep 10.

a Department of Urogynaecology , King's College Hospital , London , UK.

Introduction: The mainstay of overactive bladder treatment is the use of anticholinergic medication with its common side effects well known. This review focused on three less well-known safety issues when treating OAB. Areas covered: Patients with increased anticholinergic load are at risk of cognitive decline, dementia or even death. The elderly are particularly at risk due to polypharmacy. Botulinum toxin carries the risk of high urinary residuals, urinary tract infection and need to self catheterise. The use of vaginal oestrogens may improve OAB symptoms, but there is concern in those with a history of breast cancer. Studies have shown that the systemic absorption is negligible and does not increase the risk of recurrence. Expert Opinion: Improvement in assessing anticholinergic load is needed with the development of a universal drug scale. To avoid increasing load, Mirabegron or botulinum toxin can be used instead. There is no consensus of the use of prophylactic antibiotics when injecting botulinum toxin and at what residual to initiate self catheterisation. Despite evidence showing that the use of vaginal oestrogens is safe in those with a history of cancer, it is not fully supported by any health body. Further work is needed in those using aromatase inhibitors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14740338.2017.1376646DOI Listing
November 2017

Anticholinergic prescription: are healthcare professionals the real burden?

Int Urogynecol J 2017 Aug 13;28(8):1249-1256. Epub 2017 Jan 13.

Department of Urogynaecology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

Introduction And Hypothesis: Anticholinergic medication is the medical treatment for overactive bladder (OAB). These drugs can act on the central nervous system and can lead to cognitive decline, dementia, and potentially death. Patients taking drugs with anticholinergic effects increase their anticholinergic burden-defined as the cumulative effect of taking one or more drugs that can have adverse effects. When prescribing anticholinergic medication for the elderly, we must choose the right drug. We aimed to discover the level of understanding on this subject and its application to real clinical practice amongst our healthcare professionals (HCPs).

Methods: An 18-point questionnaire was distributed to urogynaecologists, general gynaecologists, urologists, geriatricians, general practitioners (GPs), and nurse specialists to assess knowledge on the subject.

Results: A total of 96 HCPs completed the questionnaire. The nurse specialists had the highest score in identifying that oxybutynin was the drug most likely to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). The urogynaecologists had the highest score in identifying that trospium chloride was least likely to cross the BBB, whereas the GPs had the lowest score. Solifenacin was the most popular anticholinergic drug prescribed in the elderly without dementia. Trospium chloride was the most popular drug prescribed in the elderly with dementia.

Conclusions: We have found that knowledge is lacking amongst all our HCPs, but especially amongst our first-line doctors, our GPs. Education is key in developing knowledge and safe prescribing, to improve the care we give to our patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00192-016-3258-3DOI Listing
August 2017
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