Urinary incontinence in the nursing home: resident characteristics and prevalence of drug treatment.Am J Manag Care. 2005 Jul; 11(4 Suppl):S112-20.AJ
To provide a descriptive overview of the elderly, nursing home patient population with urinary incontinence (UI).
This study was a descriptive, cross-sectional database analysis (2002-2003) examining UI prevalence, demographic and clinical characteristics of UI patients, and UI pharmacotherapy prevalence in the nursing home setting.
Of the 29 645 eligible subjects, 8995 experienced some level of UI at the time the minimum data set (MDS) was completed (30%). Compared with continent residents, a greater percentage of incontinent residents were older, white women and had a longer length of stay. Incontinent residents also had more indicators of frailty than those who were continent; they were more impaired on activities of daily living and cognitive performance scale scores, were hospitalized more frequently, and had more urinary tract infections, pressure ulcers, and depression. More incontinent residents were using pads/briefs and had bladder retraining and scheduled toileting. Only 8.7% of those residents rated as having the most severe level of incontinence (MDS level 4) were being treated with pharmacotherapy. Of the 8995 residents with a UI rating of 1 to 4, only 8% (n = 731) had pharmacotherapy.
There is a high prevalence of UI among nursing home residents and having this condition is negatively correlated with measures of resident health status and healthcare utilization. A variety of interventions are used in this setting to treat UI, and use of pharmacologic therapy appears to be quite low. Appropriate use of interventional strategies that may include drug treatment for UI in the nursing home may reduce the substantial personal and cost burdens associated with this condition. However, clinicians may need population-specific scientific evidence in determining which nursing home patients will benefit most from pharmacotherapy.