April 10, 2017 – Bowel and Bladder management problems are often described as the most difficult and persistent challenges after SCI. In March, the Neilsen Foundation brought together experts in research, clinical care, industry, funding, and regulatory issues to identify promising approaches which may solve some of these challenges.
Participants shared compelling descriptions of issues faced by physicians and consumers, currently available tools, knowledge and treatments. Using this information as a basis, emerging opportunities were identified for areas where significant inroads could be accomplished within 10 years. In summary, five thematic areas were identified:
- Leverage current and emerging technologies in the areas of Neuromodulation and Drug Repurposing.
- Update and disseminate Clinical Practice Guidelines for consumers and clinicians.
- Build knowledge in Bowel Physiology to improve diagnoses and target treatments.
- Restore Sensation/Feedback to provide patient awareness, diagnosis, and closed-loop technology.
- Identify and quantify the effect of Rehabilitation/Activity/Exercise on bowel, bladder and sexual function, including early interventions.
The next big question is where do we go from here?
A group of key stakeholders are preparing to summarize the workshop by developing a publication to reach the larger SCI community. This white paper can serve to promote a clear framework to achieve improved bowel and bladder management for people with SCI by 2027.