Background/aims: The objective of this study is to examine if interpersonal support and digital vaginal palpation (DVP) as part of the pelvic floor muscle exercise (PFME) training is more effective for stress urinary incontinence (SUI) than PFME with a printed handout instruction. Methods: 108 women who presented to the family medicine outpatient clinic without having urine leakage as a chief complaint were selected. They were randomized to either the group who received interpersonal support and DVP as part of the PFME training (experimental group), or the group who received PFME with a printed handout instruction (control group). The effects were assessed with 1-h pad tests. Results: A total of 99 patients (50 experimental, 49 control) completed the study. The patients' mean age was 55.35 ± 9.60 years, ranging from 20 to 80 years. All patients without urinary leakage listed as a chief complaint exhibited more or less urine leakage during the 1-h pad test. A significant decrease in the weight of 1-h pad test from baseline was observed in the experimental group (p < 0.001) compared to the control group (p = 0.514). Conclusion: Interpersonal support and DVP as part of the PFME training is more effective than PFME with a printed handout instruction. PFME, performed correctly and consistently, is effective even in patients who have very few symptoms of SUI.
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