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Author Notes:

Marianna Alperin, MD, MS Twitter: @mariannaalperin Email: ma;perin@health.ucsd.edu

Gina Northington, MD, PhD. Twitter : @GinaNorthington. Email:gina.northington@emory.edu

M.A. serves on the scientific advisory board of Renovia, Inc. I.U.M. serves on the scientific advisory board of Luca Biologics. The other authors have declared they have no conflicts of interest.


Research Funding:

This work was supported in part by NIH/NICHD grants R01 HD092515, R01 HD102184, NIH/NIDDK grant R01DK128639 (to M.A.); NIH/NIA grant R01AG055564, NIH/NIGMS grant R01GM121558 (to B.N.B); NIH/NIA grants R01AG052494 and R56AG064634 and NIH/NIDDK grants P20-DK119840 (to I.U.M); NIH/NICHD grants R01 HD061811, R01 HD045590, R01 HD083383, R01HD097187 (P.A.M); NIH/NICHD grant R21HD089555 (to K.A.C).


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Obstetrics & Gynecology
  • aging
  • biomechanics of the female pelvic floor
  • impact of hormonal milieu on the female pelvic floor structure and function
  • pelvic floor disorders
  • pelvic organ prolapse
  • pelvic floor structural anatomy and mechanism of disease
  • stress urinary incontinence
  • COST
  • RISK

Foundational Science and Mechanistic Insights for a Shared Disease Model: An Expert Consensus

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Journal Title:



Volume 28, Number 6


, Pages 347-350

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Pelvic floor disorders (PFDs) are complex conditions that impact millions of women worldwide. It is estimated that PFDs will affect approximately 30%–50% of women older than 50 years and incur a 20% lifetime risk of undergoing at least 1 surgical procedure to repair either pelvic organ prolapse (POP) or stress urinary incontinence (SUI) by age 80 years.1 The surgical costs alone are estimated to exceed $10 billion annually,1–6 and this does not account for the cost of nonsurgical and conservative treatments. Although a large body of epidemiological literature provides important information regarding the risk factors for PFDs, the pathogenesis of POP and SUI continues to be poorly understood. Consequently, POP and SUI are associated with significant health care expenditure primarily due to lack of preventive measures, high failure rate of available interventions, and the need for retreatments. Furthermore, the long-standing gaps in mechanistic insights into the pathophysiology of POP and SUI represent one of the major barriers to the development of scientifically rational preventive and therapeutic strategies. Women’s health across the life span depends on a better understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the female pelvic floor (PF) and the causal links between the multifactorial epidemiological risk factors and POP/SUI.

Copyright information:

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/rdf).
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