Researchers at UTHSC Study Urinary Urge Incontinence in Women

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The Department of Preventive Medicine at UTHSC is conducting a research study on urinary urge incontinence in women over the age of 18. Women with frequent urinary urges or an “overactive bladder” are encouraged to participate.

The Department of Preventive Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) is conducting a research study on urinary urge incontinence in women over the age of 18. The research, referred to as the “Bridges” study, could mean that help is on the way for a distressing problem that affects a wide range of women. Recruitment for study volunteers is currently in progress. Women with frequent urinary urges or an “overactive bladder” are encouraged to participate.

Nearly 35 percent of women over the age of 40 experience urinaryincontinence, which is associated with increased social isolation, falls and fractures. Women report that urinary incontinence is uncomfortable and embarrassing, and the inconvenience prompts them to seek treatment from their primary health care providers. However, primary care providers often have difficulty accurately diagnosing the specific type of urinary incontinence experienced by a woman. If this common condition could be precisely diagnosed and treated by the primary care provider, the advancement would mean a considerable public health benefit for women.

The Bridges study’s purpose is to determine if answers to a simple questionnaire can provide an accurate diagnosis of urinary urge incontinence that could be used by primary care providers. To treat women diagnosed with this problem, Bridges is using an FDA-approved medicine for urge incontinence called “fesoterodine” (Toviaz