The overactive bladder (OAB) picture has dramatically changed in the last 20 years. A quarter century ago, this symptom complex did not even exist. Bladder hyperactivity and urgency incontinence were separate entities poorly understood and treated only with the first-generation anti-muscarinic medications, propantheline and oxybutynin. Only in early 2000 came the concept of this syndrome made of four intimately linked symptoms that we today call OAB. With this concept, new pharmacological agents were launched. These new agents may have not dramatically improved symptoms in comparison with older agents, but undeniably have a more tolerable side effect profile, leading to better compliance and adherence. Neuromodulation was introduced a few years later, giving hope to the worst OAB cases, but with a limited applicability due to its cost. A real revolution occurred around 2010 with the demonstration of onabotulinumtoxinA’s efficacy in controlling the symptoms of OAB. Several years passed before it proved its place in the treatment algorithm for OAB. It is definitely time for the Canadian Urological Association (CUA) to produce guidelines to help Canadian urologists better integrate a sequence of investigation, diagnosis, and treatment, which has become more complex over the years.
To do so, the CUA gave a group of experts, Canadian physicians and nurses, the difficult task of putting together a comprehensive document to guide all interested professionals in the management of this interesting and common syndrome, which has so much impact on our patients’ quality of life.