Researchers from Copenhagen University have published a study in the International Urogynecology Journal on the effect of first-time vaginal birth on stress urinary incontinence and/or mixed urinary incontinence. According to study findings, oxytocin played no part in increased risk, but urinary incontinence during pregnancy predicted risk after delivery.
Study participants were collected from June of 2003 to July of 2005. All women who gave birth vaginally in the Copenhagen University Hospital were evaluated for the study. Information on pregnancy incontinence was collected via questionnaire within the first three days of birth. Participants were asked to fill out a similar questionnaire one year after delivery. More than 1,000 women completed the first questionnaire, but that number dropped to about 850 by the second questionnaire.
Conclusion: Based on questionnaires and medical data pulled from patient records, patients with BMI above 30 prior to pregnancy, urinary incontinence during pregnancy and lesions or tears of the perineal or anal regions were more likely to report urinary incontinence one year after giving birth.
Source: Svare JA, Hansen BB, Lose G. Risk factors for urinary incontinence 1 year after the first vaginal delivery in a cohort of primiparous Danish women. Int Urogynecol J. 2013 Oct 2.