Date of Award

12-1-2017

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Health Education

First Advisor

Wallace, Juliane

Abstract

Urinary incontinence (UI) is a common public health concern among women worldwide, with adverse effects on their quality of life (QoL). This study aims to explore the prevalence of UI among Omani women aged 18-49 years old, and to explore the impact of UI on women's daily prayers, physical activities, social life, mental health, and general QoL. The study is of quantitative comparative design, and the researcher used the World Health Organization’s (WHOs) International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), as a conceptual framework. The researcher randomly chose four-hundred and one participants from ten primary health care centres in Muscat. The researcher assessed their UI status and impact on different domains of their life using UDI-6 and IIQ-7 respectively, which are validated self-reported questionnaires. From the results, the researcher highlighted the high prevalence (85%) of UI among young Omani women. Additionally, UI did have a statistically significant impact on Omani women’s ability to perform their daily prayers, physical activities, social life, mental health, as well as, their general QoL. The use of ICF framework allows policymakers and public health officials to see the big picture of UI as public health concern in Oman. It forms the basis for implementing cost-effective health education programs at the Primary Health Care (PHC) institutions in Oman, for the goal of improving women’s health and community health.

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