Fecal Incontinence is also called bowel incontinence which is referred to a stage when people face unintentional leak of gas and stools from the rectum. People may feel the inability to control the bowel movements which can be the more embarrassing situation for any individual. An unexpected leak of feces from the rectum can happen due to the weakening of the internal body parts. Fecal Incontinence occurrs when one or more of the internal body organs stop working or unable to work in a proper manner, leading to losing control over the evacuation of the feces. Usually, Old age people or adults can be seen suffering from this problem due to the weakening of the muscles or diarrhea problems.
Types of Fecal Incontinence:-
Generally, Fecal Incontinence has been divided into two parts:-
Urge Fecal Incontinence:-The condition is referred as the time when people feel heavy and want to clear the stomach. But they are even unable to hold till they reach the toilet. This is also an embarrassing problem as people may lose the control and may discharge the stools before reaching to the toilet.
Passive Fecal Incontinence:-This happens when people are not aware of the need of passing the stools and still they leak, it is the stage of passive. It is more dangerous than the stage of diarrhea.
Symptoms of Fecal Incontinence
The actual symptoms can be analyzed with the unconditional leakage of gas and passing stools at the time of diarrhea. So in short, The common symptoms include:-
Gas & Bloating
Whoever and whenever faces the symptoms as mentioned or long, it is advisable to consult the doctor immediately. One should not feel embarrassed while sharing the personal problems with the doctor. Effective treatments can be offered only after analyzing the exact symptoms and causes thereof.
Possible Causes of Fecal Incontinence:-
There can be various reasons or causes which are responsible for the focal incontinence:-
Muscle Damage referred to the injury of the rings of rectum muscle or anal sphincter. At the time of episiotomy or forceps surgery, while giving the childbirth, some internal muscle gets damaged due to which holding the stools may be hard for the patients and may leak the feces.
Nerve Damage can happen due to multiple reasons such as straining too much while making bowel movements, childbirth, spinal cord injury or stroke. Some chronic disease like diabetes or multiple sclerosis may also affect the nerve systems causing damage. Too much exercising and lifting heavy weights may also lead to internal nerve damage.
Chronic Constipation is the stage when someone faces the problems while passing the stools or passes dry or hard stools. These are usually hard to pass through the rectum causing weakening or stretching the rectum muscles & intestine nerve. Due to widening and weakening of the muscle, watery stools may come out through the anal.
In the Stage of Diarrhoea, it is hard to carry the loose or watery stools in the rectum for long and thus may lead to the worse situation of fecal incontinence.
Some surgeries may lead to causing the nerve and muscle damage which will lead to fecal incontinence. These surgeries may be done to treat the veins in the rectum.
Due to some inflammatory bowel disease and radiation treatments, rectum will not be able to stretch as much as required. It will lead to less storage in the rectum causing leakage of waste. When the rectal part is not able to hold the waste for long, this may create the stage of fecal incontinence.
Rectal Prolapse is the situation when rectum drops down into the anus.
If rectum protrudes through the vagina in women, the stage is called Rectocele and causes Fecal Incontinence.
After analyzing the real cause of fecal incontinence, treatment can be offered to the patient while looking at the severity. Visit the doctor at the right time before you become used to of adult pads. Don not feel embarrass and talk to the nearest person at the earliest.
Risk factors for Fecal incontinence:-
Check out the Risk factors:-
Females are more considered to be affected by the fecal incontinence due to childbirth. Actual causes are not clear but childbirth may lead to stretching the internal muscle.
Old aged and middle-aged people may suffer from the fecal problem due to the weakening of the muscle and nerve system
Physically Disabled people may also suffer from the same disease they are unable to reach the toilet in time. Apart from this, they might be suffering from nerve issues in the rectum part.
It is found in late-stage Alzheimer’s disease and dementia
Complications of Fecal Incontinence
What can be the worst situation than of having the unintentional leakage which may embarrass someone even in public place? Apart from this, this may lead to following complications:-
Mental Stress:-The problem may hurt the mental status of the person leading to various emotional distress ranging from stress, embarrassment, shame, frustration, anger, depression, and negativity while facing the people. They may get caught in the emotional trauma and began to avoid the social engagements.
Skin Irritation:- Regular fluid leakage from the rectum may lead to itching, irritation, and rashes at the rectum area. As it grows, it may lead to having some wounds, ulcers which may take time to heal and need medical treatments from professional doctors. If hygiene rules are not followed, it may lead to more infection and inflammation.
Diagnosis of Fecal Incontinence
The symptoms can be analyzed and exact disease can be diagnosed by the physical examination . Apart from the complete body-checkups, some medical tests and diagnosis methods are given below:-
Digital Rectal Exam
Balloon Expulsion Test
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Proven Treatments for Fecal Incontinence
Various Methods are used to treat the Fecal Incontinence which is given below:-
Medications: Medications can help cure the focal incontinence at the initial stage. Antidiarrheal drugs . Some laxatives are used to treat chronic constipation.
Exercise & Therapies: Fecal Incontinence usually raised through the weakening of muscle or nervous system can be strengthened through physical exercises and fitness activities. The fitness exercise includes the therapies and physical activities such as Bio-Feedback, Bowel Training, Sacral Nerve Stimulation (SNS), Vaginal Balloon (Eclipse System), Posterior tibial nerve stimulation (PTNS/TENS) etc. These exercises will improve the working of the anal sphincter and will offer the control power while making bowel movements. Although exercises can be done under the guidance of some physiotherapist which can be practiced later by own.
Surgery: As we have read, some of the fecal incontinence cant be treated with changing the lifestyle and taking medications. Surgeries are required to repair the nerve system and sphincter damaged during childbirth. These surgeries include Sphincteroplasty (to repair the weakened or damaged anal sphincter) , Treating rectal prolapse, a rectocele or hemorrhoids ( to treat the swollen veins and to reduce fecal incontinence), Sphincter replacement (Replacing the damaged natural sphincter with the artificial sphincter), Sphincter Repair (dynamic graciloplasty - Repairing Existing damaged muscle ), Colostomy (bowel diversion- attaching artificial bag to collect all the waste from fecal). All these surgeries are performed after analyzing the patient health issues.
Lifestyle Changes: Home remedies can be used to treat the Fecal problems. These remedies are:-
Kegel Exercises includes strengthening the pelvic floor muscle, bladder, bladder bowel, and uterus. it will help to hold the fecal for a long time. Doctors or physiotherapist can be hired to understand the procedure of the Kegel exercise.
We need to change our diet habits as it also affects the bowel system. If chronic constipation is the only reason one should consume healthy fluids, juices and must intake the good amount of water.In case of diarrhea, high-fiber food will make the stool little harder to get it discharged in a normal way. So people suffering through the Fecal Incontinence must make a diet chart and follow it . Try to avoid spicy and junk foods and consume natural & organic foods only.
People having bowel Incontinence need to take care of their skin to avoid irritation and itching. Keep the skin dry as possible. apply cream to retain the moisture and apply powder to keep the skin smooth. Do not let the place wet. Wash the area with fresh water, but do not rub. Use toilet paper to keep it dry. try to wear cotton underwear as it will help to absorb sweat. Avoid wearing tight clothes. To maintain hygiene rules, underwear can be changed twice a day. Absorbent pads can be used to manage such problems. but if you are using diapers or pads, try to maintain the adequate moisture so as to make it odor free and infection free.
Take timely help of the Doctor. If home remedies and lifestyle changes do not work to get the better help in focal Incontinence, better to go for the surgery to find a permanent solution.
To get rid of the situation of embarrassment, one can follow the simple tips:-
Before you go out, please use the toilet
Wear Pads or disposable underwear
Carry extra clothes or undergarments with you
Carry cleanup supplies with you
Wherever you reach, first use the toilet
Take a hold of your diets, eat or drink accordingly
You may take the medications prescribed by the doctor to control gas or leakage
Try to happy and bold enough to face the embracing situation. Never let the stress heavy on your mind. Do not feel fear, do not hesitate while seeking any help
Follow the simple preventive measurements such as exercising, lifestyle changes, healthy diet plans, avoid straining, taking treatments for constipation and much more.
Above all, never neglect the disease, face it. Take timely appointments with the specialist doctor or surgeon in Pristyn care Laser Clinic in Gurgaon and say goodbye to Fecal or Bowel Incontinence. No disease is incurable.
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