Overactive Bladder Linked to Inflammation

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SAN FRANCISCO—Increasing levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) are associated with increasing odds of overactive bladder (OAB), according to a population-based study of men and women.

Research scientist Varant Kupelian, PhD, and colleagues at New England Research Institutes in Watertown, Mass., analyzed data from 1,898 men and 1,854 women who participated in the Boston Area Community Health study and had complete data on CRP levels.

They classified participants into three groups based on CRP levels: less than 1, 1-3, and more than 3 mg/L. The prevalence of OAB increased with CRP levels in both genders.

After adjusting for age, race/ethnicity, BMI, hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, smoking, alcohol consumption, and physical activity, Dr. Kupelian's group found that each 1 log increase in CRP in men was associated with a 1.92 times increased odds of OAB defined as urgency, a 1.72 times increased odds of OAB defined as urgency and frequency, and a twofold increased odds of OAB defined as urgency, frequency, and nocturia.

The researchers observed a similar pattern among women, in whom each 1 log increase in CRP level was associated, respectively, with a 1.58, 1.63, and 1.53 times increased odds of OAB according to the aforementioned definitions. 

“These results supported the hypothesized role of inflammation in the development of OAB,” the authors concluded.

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