With better technology, medicine and science, people are getting older. Although people are getting more time, there are also other problems – specifically urinary problems.
Researchers estimate billions of people from all over the world will suffer lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) including overactive bladder (OAB), urinary incontinence (UI) and lower urinary tract symptoms that are suggestive of bladder outlet obstruction (LUT/BOO). Something needs to be done to help all the people that will eventually be affected.
Lead author, Debra E. Irwin, Ph.D., M.S.P.H, from the Department of Epidemiology at the University of North Carolina, believes that urinary bladder problems are already highly prevalent and will only increase as the population ages.
According to the results, LUTS will increase to nearly 46 percent by 2018. This means 47 percent of women and 45 percent of men will be affected. By 2018, roughly 2.3 billion people will experience at least one LUTS. OAB will increase by 20 percent by 2018, which will affect 546 million people around the world. An increase of 22 percent in UI will affect almost 423 million people by 2018. Lastly, LUTS/BOO will have increased by 18.5 percent which means around 1.1 billion people will be affected.
Africa seems to be the most effected by LUTS which is followed by South America, Asian, North American and lastly Europe.
The study used data from worldwide and regional population estimates from the U.S. census Bureau International Data Base and the EPIC study. The EPIC study was a large telephone survey who questioned more than 19,000 men and women from five different countries.
This study shows how important and urgent awareness, prevention, diagnosis and management methods are needed for these types of conditions, Irwin says. The world needs international and national programs that increase public awareness, while educating health professionals, Irwin adds, and implement a public health campaign that tackles the social stigma of LUTS, so individuals will want to seek help for their problems.
The research is published in the British Journal of Urology International (BJUI). The study was funded by Pfizer Incorporated.