Prevalence of Urinary Incontinence among Women and Its Impact on Quality of Life in a Semirural Area of Western Turkey

Tozun M., Ayranci U., Unsal A.

GYNECOLOGIC AND OBSTETRIC INVESTIGATION, vol.67, no.4, pp.241-249, 2009 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 67 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.1159/000209310
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.241-249
  • Keywords: Urinary incontinence, Women, Quality of life, Short Form-36, Turkey, MIDDLE-AGED WOMEN, RISK-FACTORS, EPIDEMIOLOGIC SURVEY, SYMPTOMS, COMMUNITY, DELIVERY
  • Eskisehir Osmangazi University Affiliated: Yes


Background/Aims: Urinary incontinence (UI) is a very common and bothersome condition among women, affecting up to 50% of women during their lifetime. Older women are disproportionately affected and often view UI as a normal part of aging, thus precluding contact with medical professionals. The aim of this study was to determine the frequency and risk factors of UI in women aged 20 years or older, as well as to examine its effects on women's quality of life (QOL). Methods: The study was conducted on 1,585 women aged 20 years and over between January and March 2007. Data were obtained by a face-to-face interview, using a questionnaire consisting of questions pertaining to the women's demographic characteristics, medical and obstetric history and UI. The Short Form-36 (SF-36) scale was used to assess the QOL of the women. Results: The prevalence of UI in this group of women was 49.5%. UI was significantly associated with advanced age (p < 0.05), lower education level (p <= 0.001), recurrent urinary tract infection (p < 0.001), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (p < 0.001), diabetes mellitus (p <= 0.001), a history of nocturnal enuresis in childhood (p < 0.001), taking diuretics (p < 0.05) and body mass index (p < 0.001). When the QOL of the women with and without UI were evaluated, the scores for women without UI were higher than those with mild, moderate or severe UI (p < 0.001 for each). Women with UI of varying severity had lower mean domain scores on the SF-36 than women without UI (p < 0.001 for each). As the severity of UI increased, it was seen that the mean domain scores according to the scale showed a decrease (p < 0.001). Conclusion: It is concluded that UI is a common disorder among women in this region of Turkey and that it also negatively affects these women's QOL, suggesting the need for more social and medical study in this area. Copyright (C) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel