NEW YORK, Aug 14 (Praxis Press) Women are routinely cautioned about the immediate risks of serious complications and death associated with elective hysterectomy, but are often not counseled about the possible long-term sequelae. Brown and colleagues reviewed 12 articles that addressed the development of incontinence in women after hysterectomy; eight were cross-sectional studies, two were prospective cohort studies, one was a case-control study, and one was a randomized controlled trial. Overall, incontinence was more common in women who underwent hysterectomy than in women who did not (summary odds ratio, 1.4; 95% CI 1.2-1.7; homogeneity p < 0.01). When patients were stratified according to the age of incontinence assessment, however, hysterectomy was associated with incontinence in women age 60 years or older (summary odds ratio, 1.6; 95% CI 1.4-1.8; p = 0.22), but not in women younger than age 60 years (summary odds ratio, 1.1; 95% CI 1.0-1.4; p = 0.03). Women considering hysterectomy should be counselled about the possibility of urinary incontinence.