Biofeedback and/or sphincter exercises for the treatment of faecal incontinence in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 3, CD002111
Faecal incontinence (inability to control bowel movements or leaking stool) can be a very embarrassing and socially restricting problem. There are many possible causes, including childbirth damage to the muscles which control bowel movements. Exercises to strengthen these muscles and "biofeedback" (used to show people how to use the muscles properly) are often recommended. The review found that there is not enough evidence from trials to judge whether these treatments are helpful. Exercises and electrical stimulation used in the anus may be more helpful than vaginal exercises for women with faecal incontinence after childbirth. The 11 trials reviewed were of very limited value because they were generally small, of poor or uncertain quality, and compare different combinations of treatments.
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