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Evidence on effectiveness of lifestyle changes

Read this article to explore the evidence of effectiveness of lifestyle changes in the treatment of incontinence.
© Association for Continence Advice. CC BY-NC 4.0

Let’s begin with you drawing on your experience and thinking about people in your practice …

Consider your answers to these questions:

  • What are the most common questions you are asked in your practice about lifestyle changes?
  • Which lifestyle adjustments do your patients find most difficult to do?
  • Which lifestyle changes do they complain about most?

Read the abstract and the plain language summary of the Cochrane review Lifestyle interventions for the treatment of urinary incontinence in adults[1]. (Available for download in PDF format).

This review looks at evidence about the effects on urinary incontinence of:

  • weight loss
  • dietary changes
  • fluid reduction
  • caffeine reduction
  • alcohol and carbonated drink reduction
  • constipation management
  • stopping smoking
  • physical activity

Your task

After having read the Cochrane review abstract and plain language summary, in what ways, if any, will this evidence review inform your practice?

What do you think are the priority areas for generation of future evidence? Share your thoughts with fellow learners.


1. Imamura M, Williams K, Wells M, McGrother C. Lifestyle interventions for the treatment of urinary incontinence in adults (Review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2015;12. [Cited 28 August 2018]. Available in PDF format from:

© Association for Continence Advice. CC BY-NC 4.0
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Understanding Continence Promotion: Effective Management of Bladder and Bowel Dysfunction in Adults

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