Document Detail

Surgery for faecal incontinence in adults.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17443511     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Faecal incontinence is a debilitating problem with significant medical, social and economic implications. Treatment options include conservative, non-surgical interventions (e.g. pelvic floor muscle training, biofeedback, drugs, sacral nerve stimulation) and surgical procedures. A surgical procedure may be aimed at correcting an obvious mechanical defect, or augmenting a functionally deficient but structurally intact sphincter complex or replace an absent/non-functioning sphincter.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the effects of surgical techniques for the treatment of faecal incontinence in adults who do not have rectal prolapse. Our aim was firstly to compare surgical management with non-surgical management and secondly, to compare the various surgical techniques.
SEARCH STRATEGY: We searched the Cochrane Incontinence Group Specialised Trials Register (31 January 2006), the Cochrane Colorectal Cancer Group trials register (31 January 2006), the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (2006, Issue 1), PubMed (1 January 1950 to 31 January 2006) and EMBASE (1 January 1998 to 31 January 2006) were undertaken. The British Journal of Surgery (January 1995 to May 2006) Colorectal Diseases (January 2000-May 2006) and the Diseases of the Colon and Rectum (January 1995 to May 2006) were specifically handsearched. The proceedings of the Association of Coloproctology meeting held from 1999 to 2006 were perused. Reference lists of all relevant articles were searched for further trials.
SELECTION CRITERIA: All randomised or quasi-randomised trials of surgery in the management of adult faecal incontinence (other than surgery for rectal prolapse).
DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two reviewers independently selected studies from the literature searches, assessed the methodological quality of eligible trials and extracted data. The three primary outcome measures were: change or deterioration in incontinence, failure to achieve full continence, and the presence of faecal urgency.
MAIN RESULTS: Nine trials were included with a total sample size of 264 participants. Two trials included a group managed non-surgically. One trial compared levatorplasty with anal plug stimulation, one compared artificial bowel sphincter with best supportive care; numbers were small in both trials. The artificial bowel sphincter insertion was followed by significant improvements in at least one primary outcome but with high rates of significant morbidity. Seven studies compared different surgical interventions. These included anterior levatorplasty versus postanal repair, anterior levatorplasty versus total pelvic floor repair, total pelvic floor versus postanal repair, end to end versus overlap sphincter repair, overlap repair with or without a defunctioning stoma or with or without biofeedback, total pelvic floor repair versus repair plus internal sphincter plication and neosphincter formation versus total pelvic floor repair. Only one comparison had more that one trial (total pelvic floor versus postanal repair-44 participants) and no comparison showed any statistically significant difference in primary outcome measures, with wide confidence intervals.
AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: Despite more studies being included in this update, the continued small number of relevant trials identified together with their small sample sizes and other methodological weaknesses continue to limit the usefulness of this review for guiding practice. It was impossible to identify or refute clinically important differences between the alternative surgical procedures. Larger rigorous trials are still needed. However, it should be recognised that the optimal treatment regime may be a complex combination of various surgical and non-surgical therapies.
S R Brown; R L Nelson
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Meta-Analysis; Review     Date:  2007-04-18
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Cochrane database of systematic reviews     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1469-493X     ISO Abbreviation:  Cochrane Database Syst Rev     Publication Date:  2007  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-04-19     Completed Date:  2007-07-17     Revised Date:  2013-06-28    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  100909747     Medline TA:  Cochrane Database Syst Rev     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  CD001757     Citation Subset:  IM    
Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, Dept Surgery, Northern General Hospital, Herried Road, Sheffield S7, South Yorkshire, UK S5 7AU.
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MeSH Terms
Fecal Incontinence / surgery*
Pelvic Floor / surgery
Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
Update In:
Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010;(9):CD001757   [PMID:  20824829 ]
Update Of:
Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2000;(2):CD001757   [PMID:  10796816 ]

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