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Study: Urge Incontinence Concerns Tops List of Urinary Tract Symptoms

February 11, 2014 2 min read

People with urge incontinence are constantly rushing to the bathroom, in hopes of getting there on time before having an accident. This can be both embarrassing and stressful, as constant sudden urges to go can disrupt work, school and other daily activities.

A new study has found that, out of all 12 lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS), urge incontinence is the most frustrating. Conducted by researchers from Helsinki University in Finland, the FINNO Study included 3,727 Finnish men and women who completed a questionnaire about their urinary complaints. The study was published Jan. 31 online in European Urology.

Results showed that rushing to the toilet (urinary urgency, 7.9%) was a major nuisance for the whole population, followed by leaking urine while coughing or exercising (stress incontinence, 6.5%), nighttime voiding (nocturia, 6.0%), dribbling after urination (post-micturition dribble, 5.8%) and leaking urine before reaching a toilet (urgency incontinence, 5.0%). Researchers also found that, when focusing on individual participants, both men and women reported leaking urine before reaching the toilet as the most embarrassing urinary symptom.

“In both genders, rushing to the toilet and waking up at night-time to urinate were listed as fairly common and troublesome problems – approximately one in 12 people stated they had substantial trouble with rushing to the toilet, and one in 17 said they had trouble with getting up at night-time to urinate,” says Kari Tikkinen, MD, PhD, from the Helsinki University Central Hospital and lead researcher for the FINNO Study.

Tikkinen notes that stress incontinence greatly concerns approximately one in eight women, while men are more worried about post-micturition dribble.

Urinary urgency and urge incontinence can be treated by diet changes and a combination of bladder retraining and pelvic floor exercises.


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