Efficacy of FemiScan Pelvic Floor Therapy for the Treatment of Anal Incontinence

Female Pelvic Med Reconstr Surg. 2018 Sep/Oct;24(5):367-370. doi: 10.1097/SPV.0000000000000467.


Objectives: Pelvic floor muscle training can be effective in alleviating anal incontinence; however, women need instruction, motivation, and feedback to gain optimal benefit. The FemiScan Pelvic Floor Therapy System is approved in the United States and European Union for the treatment of urinary incontinence. It uses office electromyography and an in-home programmable device. This study was undertaken to document the effect of FemiScan on anal incontinence symptoms of women who completed a physician-supervised program.

Methods: Women referred for treatment of urinary symptoms who also reported anal incontinence symptoms were included in the analysis. We collected patient demographics, electromyographic measurements, and responses to subjective questions about the status of their anal incontinence.

Results: Forty eight (55%) of 88 patients who started treatment completed the 8-visit protocol. No adverse events were reported. Mean age was 54.8 ± 12.0 years. There was a statistically significant increase in the mean maximal response comparing the first and final electromyographic measurements obtained during the first and last office visits: left side, 13.7 ± 9.3 μV versus 23.2 ± 13.5 μV, P < 0.001 and right side, 14.6 ± 2.4 μV versus 22.7 ± 10.6 μV, P < 0.001 were analyzed separately. Fifty six percent reported that they were 100% free of symptoms, and 77% considered their symptoms at least 80% improved. Colorectal Anal Distress Inventory results demonstrated a statistically significant improvement when comparing the first and last visit (28.9 ± 17.9 vs 2.1 ± 7.8, P < 0.001).

Conclusions: FemiScan appears to be a safe and effective treatment for anal incontinence with concomitant increased pelvic floor electromyographic activity.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Electromyography
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Fecal Incontinence / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Pelvic Floor / physiology*
  • Software
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Urinary Incontinence / therapy