This study assessed the benefit of adding behavioural modification to darifenacin treatment for overactive bladder (OAB).
Materials and methods
The ABLE trial was a randomised, open-label, parallel-group, multicentre study of 12 weeks of darifenacin treatment [with voluntary up-titration from 7.5 mg once daily (qd) to 15 mg qd at week 2] alone or in combination with a Behavioural Modification Programme (BMP) for men and women with dry or wet OAB. Efficacy was assessed as the change in the number (per day) of micturitions (primary variable), urge urinary incontinence (UUI) episodes, urgency episodes, pads used and nocturnal voids. Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) was also evaluated. Tolerability and safety assessments included adverse events and the number of discontinuations.
Of 592 patients screened, 395 were randomised, 190 to darifenacin alone and 205 to darifenacin + BMP. At baseline, the majority of subjects were dry (mean 2.8 and three UUI episodes per day in the darifenacin and darifenacin + BMP groups respectively). At study end, darifenacin alone and darifenacin + BMP both produced significant reductions from baseline in median numbers of micturitions, UUI episodes, urgency episodes and nocturnal voids (all p < 0.05), but not in the number of pads used. HRQoL also improved. There were no significant differences between treatment groups in efficacy or HRQoL variables.
Darifenacin treatment provides a degree of normalisation of micturition variables and improvement in HRQoL that cannot be further enhanced by behavioural therapy of the type used in this study. Whether behavioural modification would add benefit over darifenacin treatment in patients with more pronounced incontinence problems remains to be determined.