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Posted by on Apr 30, 2023 in Urinary incontinence | 0 comments

In a nutshell

The study compared the effectiveness of high- and low-frequency pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT) on urinary incontinence (UI) episode frequency in women with UI. The study found that high-frequency PFMT for 12 weeks was more effective than low-frequency PFMT in these patients.

Some background

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is an involuntary leakage of urine during a physical activity like sneezing or coughing. SUI is usually due to weak pelvic floor muscles. The first treatment for SUI is PFMT. PFMT is the combination of contracting and relaxing the pelvic floor muscles. This helps to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. Pelvic floor exercises vary in type of exercises, frequency, duration, intensity, and volume.

There is a need to evaluate the effectiveness of different frequencies of PFMT in women with SUI.

Methods & findings

The study consisted of 71 women with SUI. Women were randomly assigned to receive either high-frequency PFMT (group A; 35 women) or low-frequency PFMT (group B; 36 women). Each group performed pelvic floor exercises for 12 weeks. Group A frequency of exercises was 5 times a week for 30 minutes each day. Group B consisted of pelvic exercises twice a week for 15 minutes each day. The incontinence episodes frequency (IEF) per week was recorded for each group. Pelvic floor muscle results were evaluated with 3D/4D ultrasound.

There was a higher reduction of IEF per week (by 7.9) in group A after 12 weeks than in group B (by 2.9). Group A also showed a greater improvement in the ICIQ-UI questionnaire score (by 6 points) compared to group B (by 0.5 points). The ICIQ-UI questionnaire evaluates the frequency, severity, and impact on the quality of life of SUI. 

Women in group A also had much better pelvic floor muscle function and quality of life compared to women in group B.

The bottom line

The study concluded that high-frequency PFMT significantly decreased UI episodes and improved the quality of life of women with SUI compared to low-frequency PFMT. 

The fine print

The study was conducted at one medical center only. The study also had a small number of participants and a short follow-up period. Larger studies are needed to validate the results. 

Published By :

International urogynecology journal

Date :

Mar 14, 2023

Original Title :

A randomised interventional parallel study to evaluate the effect of different frequencies of pelvic floor muscle exercises with core stabilisation using three-dimensional ultrasound: the PELSTAB study.

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