Other Names: Uncontrollable passage of feces; Loss of bowel control; Fecal incontinence; Incontinence – bowel
Bowel incontinence, is a loss of bowel control that results in involuntary bowel movements (fecal elimination). This can range from an infrequent involuntary passage of small amounts of stool to a total loss of bowel control.
Some people with bowel incontinence feel the urge to have bowel movements but are unable to wait to reach a bathroom. Other people don’t feel the sensation of a pending bowel movement, passing stool unknowingly.
Bowel incontinence can be an uncomfortable condition, but it can improve with treatment.
Bowel incontinence is normally manifested through the following symptoms-
*Accidental leakage of stool and mucous
*Loss of sensation of the passage of fecal matter
*Frequent urge to defecate and often passing small quantities of stool even before reaching the toilet
*Frequent passage of wind and loss of control of wind passage
*Difficulty passing stool
*Feeling of stool retention even after a bowel movement
*Supporting the muscles with the hand while trying to defecate
*Slimy sensation in the anus even after wiping and often requiring a lot of toilet tissues to completely clean the anus
*Stains left in underwear due to the passage of liquid stool unknowingly
Normal bowel control relies on the proper function of the:
*rectum, part of the lower end of the large intestine
*anal sphincter muscles, the muscles in the anus
*Injury to any of these areas can result in fecal incontinence.
Chronic constipation can lead to a fecal impaction. This happens when a hard stool gets stuck in the rectum. The stool can stretch and weaken the sphincter, which makes the muscles incapable of stopping normal passage.
Another complication of fecal impaction is leakage of liquid fecal matter through the anus.
Diarrhea is the result of loose or liquid stools. These loose stools can cause an immediate need for a bowel movement. The need can be so sudden that you don’t have enough time to reach a bathroom.
External hemorrhoids can block the sphincter from closing completely. This allows loose stool and mucus to pass involuntarily.
Damage to the anal sphincter will prevent the muscles from keeping the anus tightly closed. Surgery in or near the anorectal region, trauma, and constipation can damage the sphincter muscles.
If the nerves that control sphincter movement are damaged, the sphincter muscles won’t close properly. When this happens, you may also not feel the urge to go to the bathroom.
Some causes of nerve damage include:
*trauma from giving birth
*multiple sclerosis (MS)
Pelvic floor dysfunction:
Women can undergo damage to the muscles and nerves in their pelvis while giving birth, but symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction may not be immediately noticeable. They may occur years later. Complications include:
*weakness of the pelvic muscles that are used during bowel movements
*rectal prolapse, which is when the rectum protrudes through the anus
*rectocele, which is when the rectum bulges down into the vagina
*Some men may also develop pelvic floor dysfunction.
Anyone can experience bowel incontinence, but certain people are more likely to get it than others. Persons may be at risk if:
*If he or she is over the age of 65
*If the person is a woman
*If a woman who has given birth to more than two children
*If the person has chronic constipation
*If she or he has a disease or injury that caused nerve damage
*If her or his rectal muscles
The helth care provider will take a thorough medical history and physical evaluation to diagnose fecal incontinence.He or she will ask the patient about the frequency of the incontinence and when it occurs, as well as the patient’s regular diet, medications, and health issues.
The following tests may help reach a diagnosis:
*digital examination of the rectal area
*barium enema (fluoroscopic X-ray of the large intestine, including the colon and rectum, with barium contrast)
*electromyography (to test the function of muscles and related nerves)
*proctography (X-ray video imaging during a bowel movement)
The treatment for fecal incontinence depends on the cause. Some of the treatment options include:
Foods that cause diarrhea or constipation are identified and eliminated from the diet. This can help normalize and regulate bowel movements. The health care provider many recommend an increase in fluids and certain types of fiber.
For diarrhea, antidiarrheal medications such as loperamide (Imodium), codeine, or diphenoxylate/atropine (Lomotil) may be prescribed to slow down large intestine movement, allowing stool passage to be slower. The patient may be adviced to take more fiber supplements for constipation.
Following a bowel retraining routine can encourage normal bowel movements. Aspects of this routine may include:
*sitting on the toilet on a regular schedule
*using rectal suppositories to stimulate bowel movements
The patient can wear specially designed undergarments for added protection. These garments are available in disposable and reusable forms, and some brands use technology that minimizes odors.
Kegel exercises strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. These exercises involve a routine of repeatedly contracting the muscles that are used when going to the bathroom. The patient should consulthis or her doctor to learn the correct way to do the exercises.
Biofeedback is an alternative medical technique. With it, he or she learns to use his or her mind to control the bodily functions with the help of sensors.
If one has bowel incontinence, biofeedback will helphim or her to learn how to control and strengthen the sphincter muscles. Sometimes medical equipment used for training is placed in the anus and rectum.The health care provider will then test the rectum and anal sphincter muscle function.
The muscle tone measured is visually displayed on a computer screen so that the patient can observe the strength of the muscle movements. By watching the information (the “feedback”), he or she learns how to improve rectal muscle control (the “bio”).
Surgical treatment is generally reserved for severe cases of fecal incontinence. There are several surgical options available:
*Sphincteroplasty. The torn ends of the anal sphincter are brought back together so that the muscle is strengthened and anal sphincter is tightened.
*Gracilis muscle transplant. The gracilis muscle is transferred from the inner thigh and placed around the anal sphincter muscle to add strength and support.
*Artificial sphincter. An artificial sphincter is a silicone ring that is implanted around the anus. You manually deflate the artificial sphincter to allow for defecation and inflate it to close the anus, which prevents leakage.
*Colostomy. Some people who have severe fecal incontinence choose to undergo surgery for a colostomy. During a colostomy surgery, your surgeon redirects the end of the large intestine to pass through the abdominal wall. A disposable bag is attached to the abdomen around the stoma, which is the portion of the intestine that is attached to the opening made through the abdomen. After the surgery is complete, stools no longer pass through the anus but instead empty from the stoma into a disposable bag.
Solesta is an injectable gel that was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2011 for the treatment of fecal incontinence. The goal of Solesta therapy is to increase the amount of rectal tissue.
The gel is injected into the wall of the anus and effectively reduces or completely treats fecal incontinence in some people. It works by causing increased bulk and thickness of the anal tissue, which narrows the anal opening and helps it stay more tightly closed.
Solesta must be administered by a healthcare professional.
For Proper Bowel Movement – Easy Ayurvedic Remedies are:
*Drink Lots of Warm or Hot Water and Herbal Tea: Drink no less than 80 ounce of water or natural tea every day. …
*Expand the Quantity of Organic Oils in Your Diet: Top notch oils grease up the tissues so that a fitting measure of oil or fat can stay in the stool.
Regular Yoga exercise & meditation under the guidance of a proper trainer will cure Bowel incontinence permanently.
Aging, past trauma, and certain medical conditions can lead to fecal incontinence. The condition isn’t always preventable. The risk, however, can be reduced by maintaining regular bowel movements and by keeping the pelvic muscles strong.
Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.