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Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2018 Sep;228:308-312. doi: 10.1016/j.ejogrb.2018.07.011. Epub 2018 Jul 23.

The impact of physical activity measured by the International Physical Activity questionnaire on the prevalence of stress urinary incontinence in young women.

Author information

Department of Physiatry, Balneology, and Medical Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, PJ Safarik University, Kosice, Slovak Republic.
Department of Urology, Jessenius Faculty of Medicine, Martin, Comenius University Bratislava, Slovak Republic. Electronic address:
Institute of Physical Education and Sport, PJ Safarik University, Kosice, Slovak Republic.
Department of Public Health, Jessenius Faculty of Medicine, Martin, Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovak Republic.



The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of SUI symptoms in sportswomen (with a high intensity of physical activity) and non-sportswomen (with a low intensity of physical activity), according to the estimated intensity of physical activity in metabolic equivalents using the IPAQ questionnaire. Another goal was to identify relationships between SUI symptoms, intensity of physical activity, and quality of life.


A total of 1005 participants were enrolled into the study. We used the International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire (ICIQ-UI SF), the Overactive Bladder Questionnaire (OAB-q), the Urinary Incontinence Quality of Life scale (I-QoL) and the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ).


Out of the 1005 participants, the final sample of 557 women is the result of the adoption of exclusion criteria. The sample consisted of 557 women (270 sportswomen and 287 non-sportswomen) with an average age of 20.9 ± 2.8 years. The ICIQ-UI SF confirmed slight urinary leakage in 33 (6.14%) sportswomen and 11 (2.04%) non-sportswomen. The risk of reporting SUI was higher in the sportswomen group (odds ratio: 3.49; 95% CI: 1.727-7.064, p < 0.001). Significant positive correlation was observed between SUI (assessed by ICIQ-UI SF) and high intensity physical activity (in metabolic equivalents (r = 0.242, p < 0.01). Significant negative correlation was observed between SUI and quality of life (I-QoL) (r = -0.648, p < 0.001). OAB symptoms were not present in the monitored groups. (OAB - q - SS in sportwomen were 4.3 ± 5.4, in non-sportwomen 4.5 ± 4.9, p = 0.265).


Sportswomen with high-intensity physical activities in metabolic equivalents measured by the IPAQ have a greater chance of reporting SUI than non-sportswomen, resulting in a negative impact on quality of life.


Non-sportswomen; Prevalence; Sportswomen; Stress urinary incontinence

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