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Types/Timing of Physical Activity May Up Incontinence Risk

Slightly increased odds of moderate/severe SUI with substantially increased lifetime physical activity

WEDNESDAY, July 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) — For middle-aged women, substantially increased overall lifetime physical activity is associated with slightly increased odds of moderate/severe stress urinary incontinence (SUI), and greater strenuous activity during the teen years may modestly increase SUI risk. The findings were published in the July issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Ingrid E. Nygaard, M.D., from the University of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City, and colleagues examined whether moderate/severe SUI correlated with overall lifetime physical and leisure activity in middle-aged women. Data were included for 1,538 women aged 39 to 65 years who underwent Pelvic Organ Prolapse Quantification examination. Two hundred thirteen cases were identified and matched to controls in a 1:1 ratio by age group.

The researchers observed a slight increase in the odds of SUI with overall lifetime activity (odds ratio [OR], 1.20 per 70 additional metabolic equivalent task-hours/week; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.02 to 1.41). There was no association for SUI with lifetime strenuous activity (OR, 1.11; 95 percent CI, 0.99 to 1.25). The odds of SUI were increased modestly with greater strenuous activity in teen years (OR, 1.37 per seven additional hours/week; 95 percent CI, 1.09 to 1.71). There was a linear increase in the predicted probability of SUI in women exceeding 7.5 hours of strenuous activity/week during teen years.

“In middle-aged women, a slight increased odds of SUI was noted only after substantially increased overall lifetime physical activity,” the authors write. “Greater strenuous activity during teen years modestly increased SUI odds.”

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