Factors associated with urinary incontinence among Hispanic/Latina women in the United States: Findings from The Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)

Neurourol Urodyn. 2024 Feb;43(2):329-341. doi: 10.1002/nau.25360. Epub 2023 Dec 18.


Purpose: To identify factors associated with urinary incontinence (UI) in women of various Hispanic/Latina backgrounds.

Materials and methods: We analyzed data from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL), a multicenter, community-based cohort study which includes a health-related questionnaire assessing presence and type of UI. Complex survey logistic regression analysis was used to assess the cross-sectional association of Hispanic/Latina backgrounds and other factors of UI. All estimates accounted for HCHS/SOL survey design.

Results: Of 5027 women, 33.4% answered "yes" to UI. Rates of any UI ranged from approximately 21.9% to 40.3% in women of Dominican and Puerto-Rican background, respectively. Any UI and UI subtypes were associated with age older than 65 years, increasing body mass index, smoking status, any alcohol use, parity ≥3, and postmenopausal status. After controlling for covariates and when compared with women of Mexican background, women of Dominican background were less likely to have any UI (OR = 0.42, 95% CI 0.30-0.57), as were women of Cuban (OR = 0.48, 95% CI 0.37-0.62), Puerto-Rican (OR = 0.79, 95% CI 0.62-1.0), and mixed (OR = 0.62, 95% CI 0.39-0.99) background; and women of every other background except for South American were less likely to have stress UI. In addition, women of Cuban (OR = 0.53, 95% CI 0.32-0.86) and mixed (OR = 0.38, 95% CI 0.16-0.87) background were less likely to have urge UI than women of Mexican background.

Conclusions: Our study demonstrates differences in UI by Hispanic/Latina background, suggesting collective designation of Hispanics/Latinas as a single ethnic group does not adequately describe UI among this diverse group.

Keywords: epidemiology; urinary incontinence; women's health.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cohort Studies
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Public Health*
  • Risk Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Urinary Incontinence, Urge