Overactive Bladder Has Major Impact on Two Quality Indicators
Overactive bladder (OAB) and urinary incontinence affects greater than 50% of the elderly population in the United States. The problem is under reported, under diagnosed, and under treated. While OAB is clearly related to urinary incontinence, a key quality indicator for CMS, it is less well appreciated that OAB symptoms also increase an individual’s risk of falls, a second important quality indicator. Urgency and symptoms of urge incontinence increase the risk of falls in women aged 40 or older. Early diagnosis and proper treatment may prevent falls and improve quality of life in OAB patients. It is not clear that the use of medications such as anticholinergigs to treat OAB has the beneficial effect of fall prevention.
Implementation of pelvic floor fitness training using a program that also focuses on “core stabilization” may reduce fall risk by 50% or more.