NAFC and Weill Cornell Medicine are conducting a small research project to understand why patients do not seek medical care for issues around bladder and bowel leakages. It is our intention to survey a small number of patients (approx. 500) to understand what steps may be important to get more patients to discuss bladder and bowel issues with their doctors, and what they would change about the treatments they have undergone, if they have undergone such treatment.
Incontinence Impact. With more than 35 million Americans affected by either bladder control or bowel control issues, the impact is far reaching. Those that suffer from this condition also struggle with feelings of embarrassment, isolation, metal anxiety and loss of quality of life. From the onset of symptoms to the initiation of treatment takes on average 7 years and only about 1 in 3 ever seek treatment.
Recently NAFC surveyed over 1,000 individuals challenged with incontinence. The results were hardly surprising, but indicated a high level of dissatisfaction with both the treatment options available and the interaction with healthcare providers. As a result, NAFC estimates that there may be millions of symptomatic adult Americans that are not in therapy for bladder leakage issues.
Purpose. The purpose of this research project is to understand why there is such a high level of dissatisfaction with treatment options. We wish to understand the level of knowledge that patients have on treatment options and what information about the available treatment options would increase the likelihood of patients seeking care.
The team from Weill Cornell Medicine, led by Dr. Jeremy Wiygul, a practicing urologist, is currently developing new methods to deliver treatment for incontinence. Part of the purpose of this study is therefore to understand what users of incontinence treatments would like to see in new treatments, and what users would change about the treatments they have undergone, for instance any of the home-based treatments available.