Autologous adipose stem cells in treatment of female stress urinary incontinence: Results of a pilot study

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The purpose of our study was to find out whether transurethral injections of autologous adipose stem cells (ASCs) are an effective and a safe treatment for female stress urinary incontinence (SUI). We treated five SUI patients with ASCs combined with bovine collagen gel and saline. Prior to the treatment, the ASCs were isolated from subcutaneous fat and expanded for 3 weeks in a good manufacturing practice-level laboratory. The mixture of ASCs and collagen was injected transurethrally via cystoscope. Additionally, viability, multipotency, and surface marker profile of ASCs were analyzed in vitro. We followed up with patients 3, 6, and 12 months after the injections. The primary endpoint was a cough test to measure objectively the effect of the treatment. Validated questionnaires were used to determine the subjective cure rate. After 6 months, 1 of 5 patients displayed a negative cough testwith full bladder filledwith 500 ml of saline. At 1 year, the cough testwas negative with three patients: two of themwere satisfied with the treatment and did notwish further treatment for SUI. Validated questionnaires showed some subjective improvement in all five patients. This is the first study describing the use of autologous ASCs in combination with collagen gel for female SUI treatments. Thus far, the treatment with autologous ASCs has proven safe and well tolerated. However, the feasibility and efficacy of the treatment were not optimal: therefore, additional research is needed to develop SUI injection therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)936-941
Number of pages6
JournalStem Cells Translational Medicine
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Adipose stem cells
  • Female incontinence
  • Injection therapy
  • Stress urinary incontinence
  • Tissue engineering

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