Urology Book

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Bed-Wetting Alarm

Aka: Bed-Wetting Alarm, Bed Alarm Therapy
  1. Indications
    1. Nocturnal Enuresis (Bed wetting) especially in child under age 7 years
  2. Devices
    1. Bell, light, vibrator, or buzzer and Pad (Alarm)
    2. Alarms when device becomes wet
  3. Efficacy
    1. Higher success rate (75%) than medications
    2. Least relapse rate after therapy is stopped (41%)
  4. Advantages
    1. Best efficacy of any method in Nocturnal Enuresis (better than Desmopressin and Imipramine)
    2. Low initial cost ($100) compared with medications
    3. Alarm may be covered by insurance
    4. Vibratory alarms are available for hearing impaired
  5. Disadvantages
    1. Requires use often for up to 15 weeks
    2. Parents and children must be motivated for success
      1. Parents often need to sleep in same room with child initially to assist awakening to the alarm
    3. High drop-out rate (10-30%)
    4. Bed wetting should be at least 1-2 nights weekly to be warranted
  6. Preparations: Devices
    1. Bed alarms that wake the child (instead of the parent) are most effective
    2. Children prefer body-worn bed alarms over bed pads
    3. Do not use electric shock alarms
  7. References
    1. Baird (2014) Am Fam Physician 90(8): 560-8 [PubMed]
    2. French (2002) Am Fam Physician 65(9):1798-99 [PubMed]
    3. Jensen (1999) Scand J Urol Nephrol Suppl 202:73-5 [PubMed]
    4. Thiedke (2003) Am Fam Physician 67:1499-506 [PubMed]

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