Surgery for stress urinary incontinence doesn't cause pelvic
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Women undergoing surgery to treat stress urinary incontinence (SUI) are not at increased risk of developing pelvic cancers, according to a large-scale, population-based study in The Journal of Urology.

We sought to determine if stress urinary incontinence surgery (mesh or non-mesh) is associated with the development of pelvic malignancies later in life.

Researchers performed a retrospective cohort study between January 1, 2002, and October 31, 2015, of all women in Ontario, Canada without a history of pelvic malignancy who underwent index stress incontinence surgery. The primary outcome was a composite of any pelvic malignancy (including urological and gynecological cancers) following stress incontinence surgery. Secondarily, they considered each cancer individually. A survival analysis using a Cox proportional-hazards model with a 3-level categorical exposure (mesh surgery, non-mesh surgery, and control) was performed. Patients were followed until death, emigration, or the study end (October 31, 2017).

Of the women 74,968 underwent stress urinary incontinence surgery during the study period. There were 5,505,576 women in the control group. Over a median follow-up of 8.5 years, 587 pelvic malignancies occurred in the surgery group.

--Women who underwent stress incontinence surgery had a reduced risk of pelvic malignancy independent of surgery type, compared to controls.

--The individual pelvic cancers similarly demonstrated a reduced risk of malignancy following stress incontinence surgery.

At a median follow-up of 8.5 years, women had no increased risk of pelvic malignancy following either mesh or non-mesh stress urinary incontinence surgery in a large population-based cohort.