Return to continence after radical retropubic prostatectomy: a randomized trial of verbal and written instructions versus therapist-directed pelvic floor muscle therapy.Urology. 2008 Dec; 72(6):1280-6.U
To test the effectiveness of weekly postoperative pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT) versus supportive telephone contact by a urology nurse for men at 4 weeks after radical prostatectomy.
This was a randomized controlled trial in three Canadian centers. At 4 weeks after surgery, standardized verbal and written instruction about PFMT was provided to all subjects. Randomization occurred after initial instruction. Continence was defined as 8 g or less of urine loss on a 24-hour pad test. Primary outcome was grams of urine loss on pad test; secondary outcomes were International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), Incontinence Impact Questionnaire (IIQ-7) score, cost, and perception of urine loss as a problem. Data were obtained at baseline (preoperatively) and at weeks 4, 8, 12, 16, and 28 and 1 year after surgery.
A total of 216 men were enrolled; 11 were dry or withdrew at 4 weeks. Ninety-nine were randomized to the control group and 106 to the treatment group. There were no group differences at baseline for prostate-specific antigen level (mean [standard deviation] 8.4 [10.4] ng/mL; 7.6 [4.6] ng/mL), Gleason score (6.3 [0.86]), IPSS, IIQ-7 score, pad test, or voiding diary. At 8 weeks 23% of the control group and 20% of the treatment group were continent; at 12 weeks, 28% and 32%; 16 weeks, 40% and 44%; 28 weeks, 50% and 47%; and at 52 weeks, 64% and 60%, respectively. There were no significant differences between groups at any time point for the outcome variables.
Verbal instruction and written information with telephone support seemed to be as effective as intensive PFMT. Less-intense therapy may be more cost-effective.