How Common Is Urinary Incontinence?

Here are some numbers about urinary incontinence:1

  • The likelihood of having incontinence increases with age.
  • Urinary incontinence is at least twice as common in women as in men.
  • Between 3 and 6 out of 10 middle-aged and older women report having any incontinence.
  • Between 1 and 4 out of 10 older men report having any incontinence.
  • About 1 or 2 out of 10 middle-aged and older women report having daily urinary incontinence.
  • Fewer than 1 out of 10 older men report having daily urinary incontinence.
  • White women are more likely to have stress urinary incontinence compared to African-American and Asian women.
  • Up to 3 out of 10 older adults living at home have problems with urinary incontinence.2
  • About 3 out of 10 older adults in the hospital have incontinence.2
  • About 5 out of 10 older adults living in nursing homes or other long-term care facilities have incontinence.2

Citations

  1. Chapple CR, Milson I (2012). Urinary incontinence and pelvic prolapse: Epidemiology and pathophysiology. In AJ Wein et al., eds., Campbell-Walsh Urology, 10th ed., vol. 3, pp. 1871–1895. Philadelphia: Saunders.
  2. Resnick, NM (2012). Incontinence. In L Goldman, A Shafer, eds., Goldman's Cecil Medicine, 24th ed., pp. 110–114. Philadelphia: Saunders.
By Healthwise Staff
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Avery L. Seifert, MD - Urology
Last Revised September 11, 2012

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