• overactive bladder;
  • antimuscarinics;
  • tolterodine;
  • neuromodulation;
  • cat



To determine whether transcutaneous foot stimulation combined with a lower dose tolterodine would inhibit bladder overactivity more effectively than either treatment alone.


Cystometrograms were performed on α-chloralose anesthetized cats (N = 6) by infusing 0.25% acetic acid (AA) to induce bladder overactivity. Foot stimulation (5 Hz) was applied at 2 and 4 times the threshold (T) intensity in volts (i.e., 2T or 4T) for inducing toe movement to inhibit bladder overactivity. Cumulative doses of tolterodine (0.003–0.3 mg/kg, i.v.) were also administered to determine the effect of combination treatment.


AA irritation of the bladder significantly (P < 0.0001) reduced bladder capacity to 23.6 ± 7.1% of saline control capacity. Foot stimulation alone at 2T and 4T inhibited bladder overactivity and significantly (P < 0.0001) increased bladder capacity to 50.7 ± 6.8% and 79.0 ± 11.6% of saline control, respectively. Tolterodine alone at 0.3 mg/kg significantly (P < 0.05) increased bladder capacity to 65.6 ± 15.5% of saline control. However, when tolterodine at a threshold dose (0.3 mg/kg) was combined with foot stimulation, the bladder capacity was significantly (P < 0.05) increased to 86.2 ± 6.2% and 107.9 ± 10.6% by 2T and 4T stimulation, respectively. Complete inhibition of bladder overactivity could be achieved at a lower tolterodine dose (0.1 mg/kg) when combined with 4T stimulation (97.0 ± 11.2% of saline control). The amplitude of micturition contraction was not changed by tolterodine treatment.


This study suggests a novel, efficacious, non-invasive therapy by combining foot stimulation with a lower dose tolterodine to treat bladder overactivity. It also provides the first objective evidence supporting an additive therapeutic benefit of neuromodulation and antimuscarinic combination treatment. Neurourol. Urodynam. 33:1266–1271, 2014. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.