Several meta-analyses have identified methodological limitations in female stress urinary incontinence (SUI) trials, precluding the synthesis of primary studies and high-quality evidence.

Evaluation of outcome measure selection and outcome reporting in randomised controlled trials (RCTs) on surgery for SUI.

Systematic review of RCTs identified from bibliographical databases, including Medline, Cochrane, and EMBASE.

Randomised controlled trials evaluating the efficacy and safety of surgical interventions for the management of female SUI.

Two researchers independently assessed the included studies and documented outcomes.

Overall, 108 studies were identified that included 422 reported outcomes and 119 outcome measures. The three most common outcomes were cure rates (87 studies), quality of life (85 studies), and overactive bladder (78 studies). The median methodological quality rating was 3 (range 0-3) and the outcome reporting quality rating was 3 (range 0-5). Multinomial logistic regression analysis revealed that the methodological quality and use of validated questionnaire were significant predictors of the quality of outcome reporting (β = 0.538, P < 0.001; β = 0.218, P = 0.011, respectively).

Outcome reporting in SUI trials is highly variable. Until a core outcome set is developed and implemented, we propose an interim use of three commonly reported outcomes in each domain (treatment success rate – complete cure, partial improvement, or failure of response; urodynamic evaluation outcomes – overactive bladder (OAB), voiding dysfunction, and urodynamic stress incontinence; patient-reported outcomes – quality of life, sexual dysfunction, and patient satisfaction) with the use of validated questionnaires for patient-reported outcomes and subjective success rates. Complications should be also explicitly and comprehensively reported using validated outcome measures.

There is significant variation in outcome reporting in SUI trials. Our systematic review findings aim to form the basis for the development of a core outcome set.

BJOG : an international journal of obstetrics and gynaecology. 2019 Sep 18 [Epub]

S K Doumouchtsis, P Pookarnjanamorakot, C Durnea, M Zini, A Elfituri, J M Haddad, G Falconi, C Betschart, V Pergialiotis, CHORUS, An International Collaboration for Harmonising Outcomes, Research, and Standards in Urogynaecology and Women’s Health (

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Epsom & St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, London, UK., St George’s University of London, London, UK., Chair of Urogynaecology Division, Hospital das Clinicas da Faculdade de Medicina da, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil., Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, San Bortolo Hospital, Vicenza, Italy., Department of Gynaecology, University Hospital of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland., Laboratory of Experimental Surgery and Surgical Research N.S. Christeas, University of Athens, Medical School, Athens, Greece.