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Urinary incontinence among adult women with diabetes in Jordan: epidemiology, correlates and perceived impact on emotional and social well-being


  • Wegdan Bani-Issa PhD, RN,

    Assistant Professor, Corresponding author
    1. Department of Nursing, College of Health Sciences, University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE
    • Correspondence: Wegdan Bani-Issa, Assistant Professor, Department of Nursing, College of Health Sciences, University of Sharjah, P.O. Box No.: 27272, Sharjah, UAE. Telephone: +971 505 7522.


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  • Fidaa Almomani PhD, MS, BDS,

    Assistant Professor
    1. Faculty of Applied Medical Sciences, Department of Allied Health and Occupational Therapy, Jordan University of Science and Technology, Irbid, Jordan
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  • Kamal Eldeirawi PhD

    Assistant Professor
    1. Department of Health Systems Science, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA
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Aims and objectives

To assess the epidemiology and correlates of urinary incontinence and its perceived impact on the emotional and social well-being of Jordanian women.


Diabetes is a chronic disease with rising prevalence in women worldwide. Although urinary incontinence is a complication of diabetes, it is not commonly assessed with limited nurses’ knowledge available on its prevalence, correlates and its perceived impact on lives of women.


A cross-sectional survey design using probability sampling approach was used to collect information on incontinence.


A total of 1011 adult women, 20–65 years old, attending primary healthcare centres in Jordan were interviewed using a standardised incontinence questionnaire. Questionnaire included items to assess the perceived impact of incontinence on social and emotional well-being of women. The study outcome included weekly or more any, stress and urge incontinence.


Of 435 (43%) diabetic and 576 (57%) nondiabetic women, a total of 676 (66·8%) women reported incontinence. The prevalence of weekly or more any, urge and stress incontinence was significantly higher in diabetic than in nondiabetic women, 31·5, 13·8 and 20% versus 18·2, 5·9 and 14·2%, respectively. After adjusting for age, body mass index, parity and history of urinary tract infections, in multiple logistic regression analyses, diabetes was significantly associated with any (OR: 1·99; 95% CI: 1·44–2·74) urge (OR: 2·23; 95% CI: 1·38–3·61) and stress incontinence (OR: 1·54; CI: 1·07–2·22). Obesity and age were found to be significant correlates for urge incontinence in diabetics. Women with incontinence perceived incontinence as bothersome condition with negative impact on social well-being.


Incontinence is a common and distressing problem in diabetic women, especially for those who are older and obese. Prospective cohort studies are needed to assess how nurse-led interventions may impact the negative consequences of incontinence on women well-being.

Relevance to clinical practice

Nurses are in the right position to assess urinary incontinence in diabetic women. Proper communications, culturally sensitive screening and tailored interventions may assist nurses in providing care and support to alleviate the impact of incontinence on women well-being.