AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
Childbirth is responsible for most cases
Continence and defecation require functional integration of the pelvic floor musculature and its striated, voluntary sphincter muscles; of the involuntary muscle of the internal anal sphincter; and of the smooth muscle in the colon and anorectum. Faecal incontinence has many causes. It may arise from local pathology, such as perineal suppuration and trauma, or as part of the loss of control of bodily and mental function associated with frontal lobe lesions and dementia. Even in otherwise healthy subjects diarrhoea may overwhelm the sphincter mechanism.
In a syndrome analogous to stress urinary incontinence, faecal incontinence may develop insidiously in otherwise healthy women; this syndrome, the most frequent cause of incontinence, is due to denervation of the musculature of the pelvic floor sphincter. Although urinary and faecal incontinence often occur independently, they have common predisposing factors, especially female gender and difficult or multiple labours; …