Antegrade colonic enema for faecal incontinence in adults: long-term results of 75 patients.
ABSTRACT Faecal incontinence is a significant source of distress, and a permanent stoma is frequently offered to these patients. The antegrade colonic enema (ACE) procedure is an alternative approach to treat faecal incontinence. The long-term outcome remains unknown in adults with faecal incontinence. The aim of this study was to evaluate the long-term results of the ACE procedure for incontinence in adults and its impact upon quality of life.
All patients who underwent an ACE procedure between 1999 and 2009 were included. Clinical and demographic data and postoperative course were obtained from a review of medical records and databases. Each patient underwent a telephone interview. Quality of life was assessed using the GIQLI and SF36 scores, and faecal incontinence was evaluated using the Wexner score.
Seventy-five patients (54 females; 72%) were included. An ileal neoappendicostomy was performed in 68 patients (90%). The mean hospital stay was 9 days (range 6-24 days). Early complications occurred in four patients and late surgical complications (after 3 months) were observed in 12 (16%) patients. At a median follow up of 48 months, 64 (91%) were still performing enemas, and treatment was judged to be successful in 55 (86%) of 64 patients. The Wexner score was 3.4 ± 2.4, showing a significant reduction when compared with the preoperative value (P < 0.0001). Quality of life scores were in the range of a control population.
The ACE procedure is an effective long-term strategy in the treatment of faecal incontinence, with low and acceptable morbidity, and should be preferred before definitive colostomy.