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Vaginal Delivery Not Linked to Urinary Incontinence

In postmenopausal women, familial predisposition a greater risk factor

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FRIDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Vaginal delivery does not appear to be associated with postmenopausal urinary incontinence, researchers report in the December issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Rather, an inherited susceptibility to the condition may play a greater role, the study authors suggest.

Gunhilde M. Buchsbaum, M.D., of the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, N.Y., and colleagues analyzed questionnaire responses by 143 pairs of nulliparous/parous postmenopausal sisters.

Urinary incontinence was reported by 47.6% of the nulliparous women and 49.7% of parous women. Nulliparous sisters of women who experienced urinary incontinence were also highly likely to report the condition. Indeed, incontinence was more strongly related to familial factors than to a history of giving birth vaginally.

"A genetic predisposition for urinary incontinence needs to be explored further because finding a genetic link to this condition would have great implications for the direction of basic research, treatment approaches, risk management and potential prophylactic interventions," they added.

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