A four month squatting-based pelvic exercise regime cures day/night enuresis and bowel dysfunction in children aged 7-11 years

Cent European J Urol. 2020;73(3):307-314. doi: 10.5173/ceju.2020.0044. Epub 2020 Jul 20.


Introduction: In 2004, Patricia Skilling developed a new squatting-based pelvic floor rehabilitation method based on strengthening the three reflex pelvic muscles and ligaments hypothesized to control the closure and micturition reflexes. We adapted these methods to test our hypothesis that day/night enuresis was due to the inability of these muscles/ligaments to control an inappropriately activated micturition reflex.

Material and methods: The trial commenced as a randomized control trial to be conducted over 4 months, but was converted to a prospective trial at 4 weeks by order of the Ethics Committee. A total of 48 children, 7.6 ±2.5 years, 34 females, 14 males, had strictly supervised exercises twice daily, 10 squats, 10 bridge, fitball exercises involving proprioception exercises with surface perineal electromyogram (EMG) once a week.Eligibility criteria were daytime urine leakage plus night-time bedwetting. Exclusion criterion was refusal to sign consent forms. Assessment was done by intention to treat. The criterion for cure was complete dryness.

Results: At 1st review (4 weeks) 12/24 in the treatment group reported total cure of wetting; 41/48 children (86%) were cured of both daytime/nighttime enuresis (p <0.001) at 4 months. There were no adverse events. Secondary outcomes were concomitant cure of constipation, fecal incontinence, urinary retention as predicted by the underlying integral theory of incontinence.

Conclusions: We believe our methods accelerated normal childhood strengthening of muscles/ligaments which control inappropriate activation of the micturition reflex which we hypothesize is the basis for daytime/nighttime enuresis. This is a simple treatment, needs diligent application and validation by others.

Keywords: bedwetting; constipation; daytime/nighttime enuresis; fecal incontinence; urinary retention.