Protracted postpartum urinary retention—a long-term problem or a transient condition?

Noa Mevorach Zussman, Noa Gonen, Michal Kovo, Hadas Miremberg, Jacob Bar, Alexander Condrea, Shimon Ginath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction and hypothesis: Protracted postpartum urinary retention (P-PUR) is a rare puerperal complication of overt urinary retention that proceeds beyond the 3rd postpartum day. Long-term consequences of P-PUR are poorly reported. The objective of the study was to compare the long-term outcome of patients with P-PUR with a matched control group, using a validated pelvic floor distress questionnaire. Methods: All medical files of women diagnosed with P-PUR between 2005 and 2016 were reviewed. The control group was comprised of women who had a consecutive birth, matched in a 1:2 ratio, by maternal age, parity, neonatal birth weight, analgesia, and route of delivery. All women were evaluated for long-term symptoms of urinary or fecal incontinence and pelvic-organ-prolapse-related complaints by a telephone interview, at least 1 year following their delivery, using the Pelvic Floor Distress Inventory-Short Form (PFDI-20) questionnaire. Results: During the study period, there were 27 cases of P-PUR out of 52,662 deliveries (0.051%). There were no differences between the study group (n = 27) and controls (n = 54) in age, BMI (kg/m2), parity, birth weight, route of delivery, and rate of episiotomy. The majority of patients in both groups opted for epidural analgesia. Second stage of labor was longer in the study group than in controls, 134.1 ± 74.6 min vs. 73.4 ± 71.6 min, respectively, p < 0.001. The scores of the PFDI-20, UDI-6, and POPDI-6 did not differ between the groups. However, the study group had minimally elevated scores on the CARDI-8 scale (1.0 ± 2.6 vs. 0.0 ± 0.0, p = 0.012). Conclusions: P-PUR is a rare postpartum complication, yet this disturbing condition has negligible if any clinical impact on long-term urogynecologic disorders. These findings carry a reassuring message to both patients and their health care providers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)513-519
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Urogynecology Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Fecal incontinence
  • Pelvic floor prolapse
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Urinary retention


Dive into the research topics of 'Protracted postpartum urinary retention—a long-term problem or a transient condition?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this