Treatment of lower urinary tract symptoms in multiple sclerosis patients: Review of the literature and current guidelines

Shachar Moshe Aharony, Ornella Lam, Jacques Corcos


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a unique neurological disease with a broad spectrum of clinical presentations that are time- and disease course-related. Lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) are highly prevalent in this patient population, with approximately 90% showing some degree of voiding dysfunction and/or incontinence 6–8 years after the initial MS diagnosis. Major therapeutic goals include quality of life improvement and the avoidance of urological complications Owing to the wide divergence of clinical symptoms and disease course, evaluation and treatment differ between patients. Treatment must be customized for each patient based on disease phase, patient independence, manual dexterity, social support, and other medical- or MS-related issues. Ablative or irreversible therapies are indicated only when the disease course is stable. In most cases of “safe” bladder, behavioural treatment is considered first-line defense. Antimuscarinic drugs, alone or in combination with intermittent self-catheterization, are currently the mainstay of conservative treatment, and several other medications may help in specific disease conditions. Second-line treatment includes botulinum toxin A injection, neuromodulation, indwelling catheters, and surgery in well-selected cases.

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