Researchers recently published a study in the Sao Paulo Medical Journal investigating the impact of C-section delivery on pelvic floor muscles and urinary incontinence two years after delivery. Based on the research, women who deliver via C-section are at increased risk of urinary incontinence, but may not be at increased risk of pelvic floor muscle dysfunction.

Two-hundred twenty women who had undergone either elective C-section or vaginal delivery two years prior to the study were enrolled. Participants were asked about urinary incontinence and pelvic floor muscles were tested using a perineometer and palpation (digital).

Women who experienced urinary incontinence during pregnancy were more likely to suffer urinary incontinence after delivery. C-section delivery posed a higher risk than vaginal delivery; 18.9% and 17%, respectively.

Researchers noted weight gain during the pregnancy as the only risk factor for pelvic floor muscle dysfunction. All women gain weight during pregnancy, but we assume researchers were referring to women who gained gain in excess of normal pregnancy weight gain.

Source: Barbosa AM, Marini G, Piculo F, Rudge CV, Calderon IM, Rudge MV. Prevalence of urinary incontinence and pelvic floor muscle dysfunction in primiparae two years after cesarean section: cross-sectional study. Sao Paulo Med J. 2013 Apr;131(2):95-9.

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