Needs, priorities, and attitudes of individuals with spinal cord injury toward nerve stimulation devices for bladder and bowel function: a survey

Dennis Bourbeau, Abby Bolon, Graham Creasey, Wei Dai, Bill Fertig, Jennifer French, Tara Jeji, Anita Kaiser, Roman Kouznetsov, Alexander Rabchevsky, Bruno Gallo Santacruz, Jiayang Sun, Karl B. Thor, Tracey Wheeler, Jane Wierbicky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Study design: Survey. Objectives: To investigate the needs and priorities of people with spinal cord injury for managing neurogenic bladder and bowel function and to determine their willingness to adopt neuromodulation interventions for these functions. Methods: Anonymous online survey. It was advertised by word-of-mouth by community influencers and social media, and by advertisement in newsletters of advocacy groups. Results: Responses from 370 individuals (27% female, 73% male) were included. Bladder emptying without catheters was the top priority for restoring bladder function, and maintaining fecal continence was the top priority for restoring bowel function. The biggest concerns regarding external stimulation systems were wearing a device with wires connecting to electrodes on the skin and having to don and doff the system daily as needed. The biggest concerns for implanted systems were the chances of experiencing problems with the implant that required a revision surgery or surgical removal of the whole system. Respondents were willing to accept an external (61%) or implanted (41%) device to achieve improved bladder or bowel function. Conclusions: Bladder and bowel dysfunction remain important unmet challenges for individuals living with SCI who answered our survey. These individuals are willing to accept some potential risks of nerve stimulation approaches given potential benefits. Additional consumer input is critical for guiding both research and translation to clinical use and personalized medicine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1216-1226
Number of pages11
JournalSpinal Cord
Volume58
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding This work was supported in part by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation Research and Development Service RX001962. The contents do not represent the views of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or the United States Government.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, This is a U.S. government work and not under copyright protection in the U.S.; foreign copyright protection may apply.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Needs, priorities, and attitudes of individuals with spinal cord injury toward nerve stimulation devices for bladder and bowel function: a survey'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this