A prospective, randomized study comparing the effect of augmented biofeedback with sensory biofeedback alone on fecal incontinence after obstetric trauma

Dis Colon Rectum. 1999 Jun;42(6):753-8; discussion 758-61. doi: 10.1007/BF02236930.


Purpose: This study was designed to compare prospectively the effects of augmented biofeedback with those of sensory biofeedback alone on fecal incontinence and anorectal manometry after obstetric trauma.

Methods: A consecutive cohort of 40 females with impaired fecal continence after obstetric anal sphincter injury were recruited from a dedicated perineal clinic. Patients were randomly assigned to receive either augmented biofeedback or sensory biofeedback alone. All patients were assessed before and after twelve weeks of biofeedback training, using a fecal continence questionnaire and anorectal manometry.

Results: Thirty-nine of 40 females recruited completed the study. Continence scores improved in both treatment groups, but the results were better for those who received augmented biofeedback. Anorectal manometry was unchanged by sensory biofeedback, whereas anal resting and squeeze pressures increased with augmented biofeedback. No change in anal vector symmetry was observed in either group.

Conclusion: Augmented biofeedback training is superior to sensory biofeedback alone in the treatment of impaired fecal continence after obstetric trauma.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anal Canal / injuries*
  • Anal Canal / physiopathology
  • Biofeedback, Psychology* / methods
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy*
  • Fecal Incontinence / etiology*
  • Fecal Incontinence / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Manometry
  • Prospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome