Most Bothersome Symptom

A study in European Urology set out with the goal to identify and rank some of the common lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) using a population-based sample of adults. The objective of the survey and the research? To delve into the researchers interests in what is actually the most bothersome LUTS symptom.

The study included 3727 people, both males and females. A scale, the Danish Prostatic Symptom Score, was used for assessment of 12 different urinary symptoms.

The Findings

Incontinence symptoms, and the burden from the symptoms, were higher in women than men. Women have a higher incidence of incontinence because

The research found that the most bothersome symptom overall from both men and women was urgency. Stress urinary incontinence came in second, nocturia came in third, and postmicturition drip came in fourth.

An Explanation of The Most Common—but Most Annoying—Symptoms

Urgency – Urgency is a hallmark of overactive bladder syndrome. Urgency can be felt by both men and women. It is a feeling that can strike without warning, and may also feel like there’s no time to get to a restroom.

Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) – When the pelvic muscles are damaged, they are weakened. These weakened muscles cannot hold in urine when stress is put on them. In the case of SUI, stress means anything from physical activity like jumping or jogging, to everyday things like coughing, sneezing, or laughing. The pelvic muscles may be damaged due to childbirth, injury, or prior surgeries.

Nocturia – This is waking up frequently during the night to use the bathroom. If you get up more than once to use the restroom during the course of a night’s sleep. People who do not have nocturia should be able to sleep 6-8 hours without getting up. Patients with nocturia could get out of bed up to six times to go to the bathroom. Some possible causes for nocturia are bladder prolapse, neurologic conditions, diabetes, or enlarged prostate.

Post-void drip – As men age, the prostate gland can become enlarged this is very common, and it is called benign prostate hypoplasia. Though the cause is not fully understood, it is a normal part of aging for most men. Prostate enlargement causes the gland to press against the urethra, contracting the bladder so it holds less urine causing more frequent urination. Post-void drip is a major part of this because some urine will remain in the bladder even after it empties.

Why is Urgency the Worst Symptom?

Participants rated urgency as the most troubling symptom. This is probably because urges can come at any time, without warning.

The unpredictability of urgency can cause anxiety. People suffering from urge incontinence, mixed incontinence, or overactive bladder syndrome (urgency is a symptom of these three conditions) may become withdrawn. It becomes easier to stay home and avoid social outings or activities, than to risk an urgency incident or an accident.

But there is good news: all of these conditions are treatable. If you are suffering from urgency, frequent urination, or other bladder symptoms, contact us. Or call our discreet, dedicated Medical Concierge at 800-771-1953.


About The Incontinence Institute

At the Incontinence Institute, our team of healthcare providers understand the physical and mental trials that accompany living with urinary or bowel incontinence. Because of this, we are sensitive to your situation and treat all of our patients with the utmost respect and concern for discretion.

Individual incontinence conditions, treatment and recovery times may vary. Each patient's experience with incontinence procedures and / or surgery will differ. All surgical procedures involve some level of risk. If directed to pursue surgery by your physician, prompt action is advised, as waiting may reduce the efficacy of surgical treatment. The opinions expressed in patient testimonials are by patients only; they are not qualified medical professionals. These opinions should not be relied upon as, or in place of, the medical advice of a licensed doctor, etc.

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Incontinence Institute 2009 Mallory Lane, Suite 100 Franklin, Tennessee 37067