A Prospective Study of the Association between Physical Activity and Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Parous Middle-Aged Women: Results from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children

Nour Alhababi, Maria Christine Magnus, Carol Joinson, Abigail Fraser

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Abstract

PURPOSE: To examine the prospective associations between physical activity and a range of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in parous middle-aged women.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We used prospectively collected data on women participating in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. Physical activity levels were self-reported at mean age of 37.2 years (SD 4.6) and translated into metabolic-equivalents hours per week (MET hours/week). Women reported symptoms of LUTS (stress incontinence, urgency incontinence and mixed incontinence) after 3 (n=4126) and 11.5 (n=2770) years of follow-up.

RESULTS: Prevalence of any LUTS after 3 and 11.5 years of follow-up (mean ages 40.5 years and 49.3 years) was 15% and 23%, respectively. Women in the highest category of physical activity (≥43.2 MET hours/week) had lower odds of stress incontinence (adjusted OR (aOR)=0.51; 95% CI 0.32, 0.80) compared to women in the lowest category (0 MET hours/week) after 3 years of follow-up. After 11.5 years of follow-up, women in the highest category of physical activity had lower odds of stress incontinence (aOR= 0.56; 95%CI: 0.39, 0.82), urgency incontinence (aOR= 0.34; 95%CI: 0.20, 0.67) and mixed incontinence (aOR= 0.34; 95%CI: 0.19, 0.63) when compared to women in the lowest physical activity category.

CONCLUSION: Greater physical activity is associated with reduced odds of LUTS, especially stress incontinence, among middle-aged parous women. Further research is necessary to examine the impact of different types of physical activity on LUTS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)779-786
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Urology
Volume202
Issue number4
Early online date30 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019

Keywords

  • exercise
  • lower urinary tract symptoms
  • urinary bladder
  • urinary incontinence
  • women’s health

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