Population-based survey on disease insight, quality of life, and health-seeking behavior associated with female urinary incontinence

Hoon Choi, Jae Young Park, Jeong Kyun Yeo, Mi Mi Oh, Du Geon Moon, Jeong Gu Lee, Jae Hyun Bae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To evaluate disease insight, personal distress, and healthcare-seeking behavior of women with urinary incontinence (UI) to improve women's health in Korea. Methods: In October 2012, 500 Korean women residing around Seoul, Incheon, and Gyeonggi-do were selected by random sampling for a population-based cross-sectional survey conducted by computer-aided telephone interview. Sixteen questions, which included information on demographic characteristics, information sources, disease insights, and general health-seeking behavior, were used for data collection. Results: Among the responders, 23.8% experienced UI, the prevalence of which increased with increasing age; 83.3% knew about UI through the mass media out of 98.2% apprehended people. Regarding general awareness of UI, 77.2% understood that UI is caused by aging. A total of 48.7% of subjects experienced societal restrictions because of UI. Most women in their 30s (25.6%) acquired UI information from the Internet, while those in their 50s and 60s (50-59 years, 51.1%; 60-64 years, 42.4%) learned about UI through friends. Among subjects who did not have UI, 89.37% intended to see a doctor or consult a professional if they developed UI (83.2%). Among those with UI, however, only 59.0% had talked about UI; 79.7% had talked with friends or associates, whereas only 23.2% had consulted a professional. Conclusions: Most respondents tended to obtain information on UI through the mass media. Subjects who did not have UI expressed their intention to consult a professional if they developed UI, while the percentage of subjects with UI who had consulted a professional was very low. Many women are ashamed of UI in Korea, which may be changed by providing efficient advertising with the right information and establishing a new perception of UI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-46
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Neurourology Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Health care
  • Prevalence
  • Urinary incontinence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Urology


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