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Effects of Bariatric Surgery on Female Pelvic Floor Disorders

      Objective

      To assess the effect of weight loss on urinary incontinence (UI), pelvic organ prolapse, colorectal-anal complaints, and sexual dysfunction among obese women undergoing bariatric surgery.

      Materials and Methods

      One hundred sixty consecutive women who underwent bariatric surgery were prospectively enrolled. Four validated questionnaires (International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire-UI [ICIQ-UI], Bristol Female Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms-SF [BFLUTS-SF], Pelvic Floor Distress Inventory-20 [PFDI-20], and Pelvic Organ Prolapse/Urinary Incontinence Sexual Questionnaire-12 [PISQ-12]) were used to evaluate pelvic floor disorders and sexual dysfunction before and 3-6 months after surgery.

      Results

      One hundred fifty participants (mean age: 43 ± 12.8 years; mean preoperative body mass index: 42 ± 4.6 kg/m2) completed all pre- and postoperative questionnaires. Preoperatively, 56 (37.3%) women had UI, 44 (29.3%) women had pelvic organ prolapse symptoms, and 66 (44%) women had colorectal-anal symptoms. Overall, surgically induced weight loss was associated with statistically significant improvement in UI (mean ICIQ score: 9.3 ± 3.9 vs 3.3 ± 3.8, P <.001), pelvic organ prolapse symptoms (mean PFDI score: 19 ± 13.2 vs 11 ± 12.8, P <.001), and colorectal-anal symptoms (mean PFDI score: 21 ± 15.9 vs 14 ± 14.9, P = .004). Moreover, half of preoperatively incontinent women and more than one quarter of women who had either pelvic organ prolapse or colorectal-anal symptoms reported complete resolution of their symptoms. Statistically significant improvement in sexual function was suggested by both BFLUTS-SF (0.3 ± 0.8 vs 0.1 ± 0.6; P = .011) and PISQ-12 (37.9 ± 6.1 vs 39.5 ± 5; P = .003) questionnaires.

      Conclusion

      Surgically induced weight loss was associated with a significant improvement in pelvic floor disorders, including UI, pelvic organ prolapse, and colorectal-anal symptoms, as well as improved sexual performance.
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