Original Article

International Urogynecology Journal

, Volume 22, Issue 9, pp 1151-1157

Weight loss improves fecal incontinence severity in overweight and obese women with urinary incontinence

  • Alayne D. MarklandAffiliated withGeriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Department of Medicine, Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics, and Palliative Care, University of Alabama at Birmingham Email author 
  • , Holly E. RichterAffiliated withDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Women’s Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • , Kathryn L. BurgioAffiliated withGeriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Department of Medicine, Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics, and Palliative Care, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • , Deborah L. MyersAffiliated withDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Alpert Medical School at Brown University
  • , Alexandra L. HernandezAffiliated withDepartments of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
  • , Leslee L. SubakAffiliated withDepartments of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, and Urology, University of California, San Francisco

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Abstract

Introduction/hypothesis

To estimate the effect of weight loss on fecal incontinence (FI) severity among overweight and obese women with urinary incontinence, we analyzed data from women randomized to a weight loss intervention or control condition.

Methods

The modified Fecal Incontinence Severity Index (FISI) was administered at 6, 12, and 18 months in 338 women. Repeated measures analyses identified factors associated with improved FISI scores among women with baseline scores >0.

Results

FISI scores improved in 45 (13%) across all time points among the 291 women (87%) completing the trial. Improved scores were associated with a one-point lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) score, p < 0.01. Improved liquid stool FI frequency was associated with ≥5 kg weight loss (p = 0.001), 10-g increase in fiber intake (p = 0.05), and decreased LUTS (p = 0.003).

Conclusions

FI severity improved with weight loss. Women with liquid stool FI losing at least 5 kg and/or increased dietary fiber intake had improved FI frequency.

Keywords

Fecal incontinence Female Food frequency questionnaire Obesity Urinary incontinence Weight loss