In a study of older women, the prevalence of stress- and urgency urinary incontinence (SUI and UUI) was at least two-fold higher among women in the highest category of body mass index (BMI) or fat mass compared with women in the lowest category.
Also, women who lost at least 5% of their BMI or fat mass were less likely to experience new or persistent SUI over 3 years than women with less weight loss.
The findings suggest that higher BMI and fat mass are important markers of risk for SUI and UII in older women, and that their risk of SUI may be partially reversible through weight loss.
"Interestingly, changes in body composition and grip strength were associated with changes in SUI, but not in UUI, frequency over time. These findings suggest that optimization of body composition may help to modify the risk of SUI, but not necessarily UUI," said Dr. Anne Suskind, lead author of the Journal of the American Geriatrics study.
Article: Urinary Incontinence in Older Women: The Role of Body Composition and Muscle Strength: From the Health, Aging, and Body Composition Study, Anne M. Suskind MD, MS, Peggy M. Cawthon PhD, MPH, Sanae Nakagawa MA, Leslee L. Subak MD, Ilse Reinders MsC, Suzanne Satterfield MD, DrPH, Steve Cummings MD, Jane A. Cauley DrPH, Tamara Harris MD, MS, Alison J. Huang MD, MAS, and for Health ABC Study, Journal of the American Geriatrics, doi: 10.1111/jgs.14545, published online 5 December 2016.