Exploring the differences between mono- and polysymptomatic nocturnal enuresis

RJ Butler, J Heron, Team the ALSPAC Study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Objective. Recently the heterogeneity of nocturnal enuresis has been manifest in the distinction between mono- and polysymptomatic forms, based on the absence or presence of bladder overactivity, respectively. Although this classification has important clinical implications, there is a lack of empirical work relating to associated symptom expression and psychological functioning. The aim of this study was to identify variables associated with the two forms of nocturnal enuresis by means of a large population survey. Material and methods. From a cohort of 11 021 parents surveyed as part of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children when their children were aged 7½ years, 8242 questionnaires were returned, with 7935 children meeting the inclusion criteria. Parents were invited to complete a questionnaire containing items relating to bedwetting, toileting behaviour, day-time wetting, bowel functioning and psychological variables. Results. A total of 194 children met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV definition of nocturnal enuresis, of whom 133 (68.5%) were classified as monosymptomatic and 61 (31.5%) as polysymptomatic. Those with the polysymptomatic form were significantly more likely to have multiple episodes of bedwetting, to show signs (such as fidgeting) of needing to urinate during the day, to need a reminder to toilet during the day and to have day-time wetting and soiling. Conclusions. The proportion of mono- to polysymptomatic nocturnal enuresis was 2:1. Children with the polysymptomatic form had a number of associated bladder and bowel problems. Clinically it is important to distinguish between the two types of nocturnal enuresis in order to identify the most appropriate treatment intervention.
Translated title of the contributionExploring the differences between mono- and polysymptomatic nocturnal enuresis
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313 - 319
Number of pages7
JournalScandinavian Journal of Urology and Nephrology
Volume40 (4)
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2006

Bibliographical note

Publisher: Informa Healthcare


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