Transcutaneous Tibial Nerve Stimulation in the Management of Overactive Bladder: A Scoping Review

Alesha M. Sayner, Fiona Rogers, Julie Tran, Emma Jovanovic, Lucy Henningham, Irmina Nahon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Overactive bladder (OAB) is a condition that has physical, social, psychosocial, and financial impacts. Transcutaneous tibial nerve stimulation (TTNS) is a modality that stimulates the nerve root fibers of L5-S3, the same spinal segments of the parasympathetic nervous system as the bladder. This scoping review aims to identify current literature available on the feasibility and outcomes of TTNS as a first-line treatment option for OAB. Materials and Methods: A scoping review of six electronic data bases was performed to identify full-text articles from 2015 that explored the impact of TTNS on OAB and bladder dysfunction in people aged >18 years. Results: A total of 15 articles met the inclusion criteria. TTNS was compared with sham treatment, parasacral stimulation, pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT), anticholinergic medication, and percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation (PTNS). Heterogeneity in treatment application and parameters existed, with variations in treatment duration, frequency of use, and treatment settings such as pulse width (μs) and frequency (Hz). Results indicated that TTNS has efficacy equal to PFMT and PTNS in the management of OAB; however, it is not as efficacious as anticholinergic medication. Conclusions: TTNS is a promising first-line management option for people with OAB, particularly in the older population and for those with neurogenic bladder. It can provide symptomatic relief from urinary incontinence, frequency, urgency, and nocturia, while avoiding the bothersome side effects of more invasive or pharmaceutical therapies. Heterogeneity in treatment parameters limits generalizability and translation of the most appropriate clinical application and should be considered in future trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1086-1096
Number of pages11
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2022


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