Racial Differences in Urinary Incontinence Prevalence, Overactive Bladder and Associated Bother among Men: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis

Aelia Akbar, Kiang Liu, Erin D. Michos, Linda Brubaker, Talar Markossian, Michael P. Bancks, Holly Kramer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Purpose:We examined the association of race/ethnicity with urinary incontinence subtypes and overactive bladder, and associated bother in older men.Materials and Methods:This cross-sectional analysis used data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, an observational cohort of 4 racial/ethnic groups. At the sixth followup examination (age 60 to 98 years, 2015 to 2016) urinary symptoms were ascertained with the International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire. Prevalence ratios of urinary incontinence subtypes and overactive bladder without incontinence by race/ethnicity were calculated while adjusting for demographics, comorbidities and medications. Degree of bother was based on scale of 0 (none) to 10 (most) with bother presence defined as a score of 3 or greater.Results:Among 1,536 men 94% completed the questionnaire. Among completers, race/ethnicity was 40.7% nonHispanic White, 14.3% Chinese, 23.0% nonHispanic Black and 22.1% Hispanic. Urinary incontinence was reported by 11.1% and urgency urinary incontinence accounted for 78.0% of all urinary incontinence. The highest prevalence of urgency urinary incontinence was noted among nonHispanic Black men (13.0%) followed by Hispanic (11.3%), nonHispanic White (6.8%) and Chinese (2.9%) men. NonHispanic Black men showed a higher prevalence of any urinary incontinence (PR 1.62, 95% CI 1.06-2.47) and urgency urinary incontinence (1.63, 95% CI 1.01-2.61) compared to nonHispanic White men after adjustments for covariates. No significant association was noted with other urinary incontinence subtypes by race/ethnicity after adjustment for covariates. More than 70% of urinary incontinence was associated with bother for all racial/ethnic groups.Conclusions:Urinary incontinence prevalence differs by race/ethnicity but most urinary incontinence is associated with bother regardless of race/ethnicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)524-531
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2021


  • ethnic groups
  • health status disparities
  • lower urinary tract symptoms
  • overactive
  • urinary bladder
  • urinary incontinence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


Dive into the research topics of 'Racial Differences in Urinary Incontinence Prevalence, Overactive Bladder and Associated Bother among Men: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this