The frequency of bowel and bladder problems in multiple sclerosis and its relation to fatigue : A single centre experience

Journal article


Lin, Sophia D., Butler, Jane E., Boswell-Ruys, Claire L., Phu, Hoang, Jarvis, Tom, Gandevia, Simon C. and McCaughey, Euan J.. (2019) The frequency of bowel and bladder problems in multiple sclerosis and its relation to fatigue : A single centre experience. PLoS ONE. 14(9), p. e0222731. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0222731
AuthorsLin, Sophia D., Butler, Jane E., Boswell-Ruys, Claire L., Phu, Hoang, Jarvis, Tom, Gandevia, Simon C. and McCaughey, Euan J.
Abstract

Background
Bowel and bladder problems affect more than 50% of people with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). These problems have a large impact on quality of life and place a significant burden on health systems.

Objectives
This study aimed to ascertain the frequency of bladder and bowel problems in a select Australian MS cohort and to investigate the relationships between level of disability, bladder and bowel problems, and fatigue.

Methods
Questionnaires on the nature and severity of MS symptoms were distributed to clients attending an Australian MS centre. Log-binomial regression and multiple linear regression models were used to investigate relationships between disability, fatigue, and bladder and bowel problems.

Results and conclusions
Of 167 questionnaires distributed, 136 were completed. Bladder problems were reported by 87 (74.4%) respondents, whilst 66 (48.9%) experienced functional constipation and 43 (31.9%) faecal incontinence. This frequency in our select Australian MS population is similar to that reported globally. There was a significant correlation between level of disability and: bladder problems (p = 0.015), faecal incontinence (p = 0.001), fatigue (p<0.001) and constipation (p = 0.016, relative risk: 1.16). Further investigation into the causal relationships between various MS symptoms may be beneficial in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for people with MS.

Keywordsbladder; fatigue; multiple sclerosis; incontinence; constipation; Australia; directed acyclic graphs; linear regression analysis
Year2019
JournalPLoS ONE
Journal citation14 (9), p. e0222731
PublisherPublic Library of Science
ISSN1932-6203
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0222731
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85072407377
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1-12
FunderNational Health and Medical Research Council
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusIn press
Publication dates
Online19 Sep 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted19 Sep 2019
Deposited07 Jun 2021
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