, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 99-104
Date: 10 Jul 2012

Clinical impact of and contributing factors to urinary incontinence in women 5 years after first delivery

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Introduction and hypothesis

This study was conducted to investigate the prevalence of and contributing factors to urinary incontinence (UI) in women 5 years after their first birth and to evaluate the associations of UI with delivery mode and quality of life.


Between 2005 July and 2006 March, primiparous women who delivered at term in a tertiary hospital were recruited into this cohort study. Immediately postpartum, the women completed a structured urogynecological questionnaire regarding lower urinary tract symptoms. Then the same urogynecological questionnaire, the Incontinence Impact Questionnaire (IIQ-7), and the Urinary Distress Inventory (UDI-6) were mailed to them 5 years later to follow up on UI. Three hundred and twelve women responding to the mailed questionnaires were included in the analyses.


The prevalence 5 years after first delivery of stress (SUI) and urge (UUI) UI were 43.6 % and 19.2 %, respectively. Women with UI during their first pregnancy were more likely to develop UI 5 years postpartum than those without it; women who delivered their first child vaginally had a greater incidence of UI than those having cesarean birth; UUI in women following cesarean delivery more negatively impacted emotional health than it did following vaginal birth, whereas the impact of SUI did not significantly differ between delivery groups.


UI during the first pregnancy and vaginal delivery in primiparous women may predict an increased risk of having UI 5 years after delivery. UUI adversely affected women’s emotional health, especially in those undergoing cesarean section.