Influence of urinary urgency and other urinary disturbances on falls in Parkinson's disease

J Neurol Sci. 2016 Jan 15:360:153-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2015.11.055. Epub 2015 Nov 30.


Introduction: Falling is one of the most common and serious public health problems. It can cause injuries such as sprains and fractures, and hospitalization may be required for serious injuries. Patients with Parkinson's disease have a higher risk of falls, and urinary incontinence is a known risk factor for falls in the elderly. However, whether other urinary disturbances contribute to the risk of falling remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to identify the association between falls and urinary disturbances in Parkinson's disease.

Methods: A prospective cohort study was conducted at a single institution with a 6-month observation period. Subjects were ambulatory patients with Parkinson's disease. Assessments included patient demographics, disease severity measured by the Hoehn and Yahr scale, and urinary disturbances measured using the overactive bladder symptom score (OABSS). Falls were reported using a self-documented fall record.

Results: A total of 97 patients were included. Forty-four subjects experienced one or more falls during the observation period. The frequency of urination was not related to falling; however, mild urinary urgency, but not severe urinary urgency, increased the risk of falls by an odds ratio of 5.14 (95% confidence interval: 1.51-17.48). Mild urinary urgency was also associated with the time to the first fall and the frequency of falls. One third of falls occurred in the living room, and 13.8% of falls occurred on the way to/from the toilet.

Conclusion: Falls in patients with Parkinson's disease might be associated with urinary urgency, but not with the frequency of urination.

Keywords: Falls; Overactive bladder symptom score; Parkinson's disease; Urinary disturbance.

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls*
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / complications
  • Parkinson Disease / physiopathology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Urination Disorders / complications
  • Urination Disorders / physiopathology*