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A study conducted by French researchers found that women who undergo a vaginal hysterectomy for heavy menstrual bleeding do not have a higher incidence of urinary incontinence. Vaginal hysterectomy is associated with fewer complications than an abdominal hysterectomy, noted the researchers in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (July 2004).
Because the researchers believed that the lower complication rate might apply to urinary incontinence, the researchers evaluated questionnaire responses from 117 women who had a vaginal hysterectomy. The women's responses were compared with responses from a similar group of women who also had excessive menstrual bleeding but were treated with thermal coagulation of the endometrium (the lining of the uterus).
The findings showed that after 4 years, on average, there were no major differences in urinary symptoms, including urge and stress incontinence, between the hysterectomy group and the conservative-therapy group.