The prevalence of urinary distress in male and female adults with Diabetes Mellitus attending a Northern Australian Endocrine Centre
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Internationally, diabetes is one of the major contributors to health care costs. As the population ages, it is expected that the personal and economic burden of diabetes on individuals, families, health systems and countries will continue to increase. It is important that the aetiology and comorbidities of diabetes are investigated. There is a known, strong association between diabetes and incontinence but exploration of specific subgroups at risk is needed. This study explored prevalence and associated characteristics of incontinence and storage lower urinary tract symptoms in people with diabetes mellitus. A convenience sample comprised 273 adults of both sexes who attended a regional diabetes service. A self-administered, paper-based survey method was used and included the Modified Urinary Distress Inventory Short Form (UDI-6). The level of urinary distress was high. Over two-thirds of both men and women reported symptoms of incontinence, irritation or both. Significantly, more respondents with type 2 diabetes than type 1 diabetes reported symptoms. The study identified a high prevalence of urinary incontinence in adults with diabetes, with a high level of distress in males identified that had not previously been reported in Australia. These findings have significant public health importance and all adults attending diabetes services, both male and female, should receive opportunistic screening for voiding dysfunction and continence issues.
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