Biofeedback defaecation training for anismus

Int J Colorectal Dis. 1991 Nov;6(4):202-7. doi: 10.1007/BF00341391.


Anismus, paradoxical external sphincter function, spastic pelvic floor syndrome, rectoanal dysnergia, abdomino-levator incoordination for abdominopelvic asychronism, are all due to paradoxical contraction of the striated sphincter apparatus during voiding and is characterised by prolonged and excessive straining at stool. Biofeedback is the treatment of choice and has to be introduced at an early stage. We present the results of an ambulatory approach based on the integration of simulated balloon defaecation with small (50 ml) as well as constant rectal sensation volume, defaecometry and anal manometry. The pathophysiology visualised by the patient's own anorectal pressure recordings on the screen of a personal computer is explained and corrected. Sixteen patients were treated and followed for at least 1 year. Manometric data were normal except for an increased minimum residual pressure and rectal compliance. Nine patients could not evacuate a 50 ml bolus initially. Simulated defaecation became possible in seven out of these nine patients when the bolus was increased up to the individual constant rectal sensation volume. Two patients could not evacuate this volume either, while defaecation was made much less laborious in the other seven patients. Paradoxical contraction was immediately corrected in 7/16 cases. Also, as an immediate, objective benefit of a single training session, improved defaecation of a 50 ml bolus was observed in 11 patients. This effect was preserved after 6 weeks in nine cases; symptomatic recurrence did not occur in these patients during follow-up. This method of defaecation training has many advantages as compared with sphincter training using EMG electrodes eventually performed in the absence of a desire to defaecate or in lying position.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anal Canal / physiopathology*
  • Anus Diseases / physiopathology
  • Anus Diseases / therapy*
  • Biofeedback, Psychology*
  • Constipation / physiopathology
  • Constipation / therapy
  • Defecation / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Pseudo-Obstruction / physiopathology
  • Intestinal Pseudo-Obstruction / therapy*
  • Male
  • Muscle Contraction / physiology
  • Muscle Relaxation / physiology
  • Pressure
  • Rectal Diseases / physiopathology
  • Rectal Diseases / therapy*
  • Rectum / physiopathology
  • Reflex / physiology
  • Sensation / physiology
  • Time Factors