As Women Age: Perspectives on Urinary Incontinence


Lander College, Division of Nursing, Greenwood, SC 29646.


This article will examine the physiology, prevalence, and pathology of urinary incontinence to promote understanding of women's unique vulnerability to stress incontinence. Older women experience this health problem at the highest rate, as chronic medical conditions accumulate and functional impairments interact with age-related changes in organ systems, in muscle resiliency, and in the central nervous system. Nurses should promote opportunities to inform consumers that incontinence is treatable and preventable and to teach pelvic exercises to women as a useful self-care measure to maintain muscle tone and voiding control.