Bladder Filling and Storage: “Compliance”

  • Elizabeth Timbrook BrownEmail author
  • Kristi L. Hebert
  • J. Christian Winters


Compliance is a reproducible and reliable urodynamic measurement to evaluate urine storage pressures and the risk of upper tract damage. There is no agreed upon normative value for compliance but most sources cite that it lies somewhere between 10 and 20 ml/cm H2O and can be calculated by evaluating the change in volume compared to the change in detrusor pressure at two given points. Normally, the bladder accommodates filling and stores urine at low pressures due to the viscoelastic properties of the bladder, but various pathologies can cause abnormalities in bladder compliance. This chapter discusses the clinical evaluation, urodynamic tracing, and differential diagnosis of many conditions associated with abnormal compliance such as cerebrovascular accident, bladder outlet obstruction, spinal cord injury, transverse myelitis, multiple sclerosis, and pelvic surgery. It also reviews clinical scenarios that can be falsely interpreted as abnormal compliance. Therefore, the urodynamic compliance measurement provides invaluable information about a patient’s bladder filling and urinary storage and also helps to guide medical and surgical treatment options which are discussed throughout this chapter.


Detrusor Overactivity Bladder Outlet Obstruction Vesicoureteral Reflux Bladder Volume Detrusor Pressure 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    Abrams P, et al. The standardization of terminology in lower urinary tract function. Report from the standardization sub-committee of the International Continence Society; 2009.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Toppercer A, Tetreault JP. Compliance of the bladder: an attempt to establish normal values. Urology. 1979;14(2):204–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Weld K, Graney M, Dmochowski R. Differences in bladder compliance with time and associations of bladder management with compliance in spinal cord injured patients. J Urol. 2000;163:1228–33.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Churchill BM, Gilmour PE, Williot P. Urodynamics. Pediatr Clin North Am. 1987;34:1133.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Nitti V. Cystometry and abdominal pressure monitoring. In: Nitti V, ed. Practical urodynamics. 1998; p. 38–51. Chapter 5.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    McGuire EM, Woodside JR, Borden TA. Prognostic value of urodynamic testing in myelodysplastic children. J Urol. 1981;126:205.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Ghoniem G, Roach M, Lewis V, Harmon E. The value of leak pressure and bladder compliance in the urodynamic evaluation of meningomyelocele patients. J Urol. 1990;144:1440–2.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Nitti V. Urodynamic and video-urodynamic evaluation of the lower urinary tract. In: Wein, et al., editors. Campbell-Walsh urology. Saunders: 2011; 10th ed; p.1847–70. Chapter 62.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Blaivas J, Chancellor M, et al. Low bladder compliance. In: Blaivas J, Chancellor M, et al., editors. Atlas of urodynamics. 2007; p. 56–61. Chapter 6.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elizabeth Timbrook Brown
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kristi L. Hebert
    • 1
  • J. Christian Winters
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of UrologyLouisiana State University School of MedicineNew OrleansUSA

Personalised recommendations