DOI: 10.1002/nau.25416 ISSN: 0733-2467

Patient and physician decision‐making dynamics in overactive bladder care: A mixed methods study

Hannah M. Sitto, Casey N. Brodsky, Daniela Wittmann, Lauren P. Wallner, Courtney Streur, Melissa DeJonckheere, John S. Stoffel, Anne P. Cameron, Aruna Sarma, James Quentin Clemens, Giulia M. Ippolito
  • Urology
  • Neurology (clinical)



Overactive bladder management includes multiple therapeutic options with comparable efficacy but a range of administration modalities and side effects, creating an ideal setting for shared decision‐making. This study investigates patient and physician health beliefs surrounding decision‐making and expectations for overactive bladder with the aim of better understanding and ultimately improving decision‐making in overactive bladder care.


Patient and physician participants completed a questionnaire followed by a semi‐structured interview to assess health beliefs surrounding decision making and expectations for overactive bladder treatment. The semi‐structured interview guide, developed in an iterative fashion by the authors, probed qualities of overactive bladder therapies patients and physicians valued, their process of treatment selection, and their experiences with therapies.


Patients (n = 20) frequently cited treatment invasiveness, efficacy, and safety as the most important qualities that influenced their decision when selecting overactive bladder therapy. Physicians (n = 12) frequently cited safety/contraindications, convenience, cost/insurance, and patient preference as the most important qualities. In our integration analysis, we identified four key themes associated with decision making in overactive bladder care: frustration with inaccessibility of overactive bladder treatments, discordant perception of patient education, diverging acceptability of expected outcomes, and lack of insight into other parties' decisional priorities and control preferences.


While both patients and physicians desire to engage in a shared decision‐making process when selecting therapies for overactive bladder, this process is challenged by significant divergence between patient and physician viewpoint across key domains.

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