The Epidemiology of Pelvic Floor Disorders and Childbirth. An Update.

Jennifer L. Hallock, Victoria L. Handa

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Using a lifespan model, this article presents new scientific findings regarding risk factors for pelvic floor disorders (PFDs), focusing on the role of childbirth in the development of single or multiple coexisting PFDs. Phase I of the model includes predisposing factors, such as genetic predisposition and race. Phase II includes inciting factors, such as obstetric events. Prolapse, urinary incontinence (UI), and fecal incontinence (FI) are more common among vaginally parous women, although the impact of vaginal delivery on risk of FI is less dramatic than prolapse and UI. Phase III includes intervening factors, such as age and obesity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalObstetrics and Gynecology Clinics of North America
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Cesarean section
  • Childbirth
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Pelvic floor disorders
  • Pelvic organ prolapse
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Vaginal delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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