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Greater physical activity reduces LUTS risk in middle-aged women

08 Oct 2019

Increased physical activity appears to reduce the risk of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS), particularly stress incontinence, in middle-aged parous women, suggest the results of a recent study.

At 3 and 11.5 years of follow-up, the prevalence of any LUTS was 15 percent and 23 percent at a mean age of 40.5 and 49.3 years, respectively.

The odds of stress incontinence (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.51, 95 percent CI, 0.32–0.80) was reduced among women in the highest category of physical activity (43.2 MET hours per week) as compared to those in the lowest category (0 MET hours per week) at 3 years of follow-up.

At 11.5 years of follow-up, women in the highest physical activity category had lower risks of stress incontinence (aOR, 0.56, 0.39–0.82), urgency incontinence (aOR, 0.34, 0.20–0.67) and mixed incontinence (aOR, 0.34, 0.19–0.63) than those in the lowest category.

“Further research is necessary to examine the impact of different types of physical activity on LUTS,” the authors said.

This study prospectively collected data on middle-aged parous women participating in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) to examine associations between physical activity and a range of LUTS.

Levels of physical activity were self-reported at a mean age of 37.2±4.6 years and translated into MET hours per week. Symptoms of LUTS, including stress, urgency and mixed incontinence, were reported at 3 and 11.5 years of follow-up by a total of 4,126 and 2,770 women, respectively.

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