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Female Pelvic Med Reconstr Surg. 2010 Sep;16(5):278-83. doi: 10.1097/SPV.0b013e3181ed3e31.

Urinary incontinence, fecal incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse in a population-based, racially diverse cohort: prevalence and risk factors.

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From the *Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA; †Department of Public Health and Primary Health Care, University of Bergen, Norway; ‡Research Unit for General Practice, Uni Health, Bergen, Norway; §Departments of Epidemiology and Biostatistics; ∥Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California, San Francisco; and ¶Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, Oakland, CA.



: We investigated the prevalence of and risk factors for combinations of urinary incontinence (UI), fecal incontinence (FI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) in racially diverse women older than 40 years.


: The Reproductive Risks for Incontinence Study at Kaiser is a population-based study with data from 2106 women older than 40 years. Pelvic floor conditions were determined by self-report. Risk factors were assessed by self-report, interview and record review. Independent risk factors were identified by multinomial logistic regression analysis.


: At least one pelvic floor condition was reported by 714 (34%) women. Of these, 494 (69%) had only UI, 60 (8%) only POP, and 46 (6%) only FI. Both UI and FI were reported by 64 (9%) and both UI and POP by 51 (7%). Among women with FI, 60% reported more than one condition. Corresponding figures for POP and UI were 49% and 18%. Estrogen use and constipation were shared risk factors for UI, FI and POP. Body mass index was a unique risk factor UI only, diabetes FI only and parity POP only. No clear pattern could be found to support the hypothesis that risk factors for single conditions are more strongly associated with combined conditions.


: Patients with FI or POP often have concomitant UI. These diseases both share and have unique risk factors in a complex pattern.

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