Researchers from the University College of Medical Sciences in Delhi, India, found that the combination of tamsulosin and darifenacin benefit Benign Prostate Hyperplasia (BPH) patients with Overactive Bladder Syndrome, suggesting that this combined approach is a safe and effective treatment against the condition. The study entitled “‘Tamsulosin and Darifenacin’ Versus ‘Tamsulosin Monotherapy’ for ‘BPH with Accompanying Overactive Bladder’ “, was published in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research.
BPH is characterized by a gradual benign enlargement of the prostate as men age. About half the men who are in their 50’s have BPH, this value rising to 80% by the age of 80. Prostate enlargement in BPH leads to urine storage and voiding complications. Patients with storage-related problems – increased frequency, urgency, nocturia and urinary incontinence – are referred to as having overactive bladder syndrome. Treatments for BPH generally rely on drug prescriptions to alleviate urinary tract blockage caused by the increased prostate size.
Tamsulosin is an alpha-adrenergic antagonist used in BPH treatment to relax bladder and prostate muscles and facilitate urination. Darifenacin is an antimuscarinic drug that decreases the urgency to urinate by blocking bladder muscles’ contractions, and is used to treat urinary incontinence. In BPH treatment, darifenacin is prescribed with caution since it might increase voiding problems. Nonetheless, various studies suggest that a combination of alpha-adrenergic antagonists with antimuscarinic drugs improves the symptoms of BPH patients with overactive bladder syndrome. Therefore, authors investigated the clinical efficacy and safety of a combined tamsulosin and darifenacin therapy versus tamsulosin alone in the management of the disease.
Over the course of 8 weeks, 60 BPH patients with overactive bladder symptoms followed either the combined therapy or the monotherapy. Both treatments alleviated disease symptoms. However, patients administrated with tamsulosin and darifenacin showed a substantial improvement of all overactive bladder symptoms compared with that of patients in the tamsulosin group. Both therapies were found to be safe and with comparable side effects, although a higher number of cases were registered in the combined drug approach. In light of these results, authors suggest that tamsulosin plus darifenacin therapy might be an effective treatment for BPH patients with overactive bladder syndrome. Still, due to the small sample size and the reduced duration of this study, further trials are warranted to establish the long-term safety and efficacy of the combined use of tamsulosin and darifenacin to treat overactive baldder in BPH.