Urinary Incontinence in Pregnant Women: Prevalence, Associated Factors, and Its Effects on Health-Related Quality of Life

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Abstract

PURPOSE:

The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of and risk factors for urinary incontinence (UI) during pregnancy and to evaluate its effect on health-related quality of life.

DESIGN:

Descriptive, cross-sectional study.

SUBJECTS AND SETTING:

The sample of the study comprised 287 pregnant women attending an outpatient clinic located in a research and training hospital in Ankara, Turkey.

METHODS:

Data were collected using an investigator-developed questionnaire that included 2 validated instruments, the International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire Short Form and Incontinence Quality of Life scale.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of UI in the study population was 21.3% (n = 61). Cumulative scores in pregnant women who “always” experienced UI and those who expressed a “large amount” of UI were lower than women with milder UI. Logistic regression analysis found associations between UI and age in years (odds ratio [OR] = 3.833; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.763-8.332), parity (OR = 2.539; 95% CI, 1.135-5.675), third trimester versus first trimester (OR = 3.206; 95% CI, 1.178-8.725), and prior use of hormonal contraceptives (OR = 0.209; 95% CI, 0.085-0.513).

CONCLUSIONS:

Urinary incontinence is prevalent among pregnant women. Age, parity, and gestational week were associated with an increased likelihood of UI during pregnancy. Prior use of contraceptive hormones was associated with a reduced risk of UI during pregnancy.

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