[Fecal incontinence in the elderly].
ABSTRACT Fecal incontinence (FI) is a devastating condition that affects quality of life. Age and gender are related with the prevalence of FI. In adults, prevalence varies from 2% to 7%. It is more frequent in women than in men (3:1) and is more prevalent in elderly patients. There are no studies in Mexico that evaluate the frequency of FI in adults older than 60 years.
To investigate the FI frequency, severity and associated factors in patients > or = 60 years.
Three groups of patients were included: a) Group I: consecutive outpatients patients from the Gastroenterology and Geriatrics Clinics of the INCMNSZ; b) Group II: INCMNSZ inpatients admitted due to a non-related condition with FI; c) Group III: Reyna Sofia nursing home residents (NHR) in Mexico City. A structured questionnaire was used to obtain demographic data, comorbidity and associated factors with FI. Grade of FI was assessed with the Wexner scale.
159 patients were included, 89 (56%) were women. Mean age was 75 years (range 59-98). There were 54 patients in group I, 50 in group II and 55 in group III. Overall frequency of FI was 33% (n = 53). Frequency of FI was 26% in group 1, 20% in group II and 53% in group III. Sixty six percent (n = 35) of the FI cases were female. Neuropsychiatric disorders were associated to FI in 29 patients (54%) and diabetes mellitus in 17 (32%). Eighty percent of patients wore disposable pads for FI. Urinary incontinence was associated to FI in 31 (58%). Thirteen (24%) patients had mild FI, 20 (38%) moderate, and 20 (38%) severe FI. The severity score for FI was lower in groups I and II (8.1 y 9.7) than in group III (18, p = 0.001). Age in patients with mild FI was significantly lower (73 years) than in patients with severe FI (83y, p = 0.01).
FI in patients older than 60 years old is a very common condition. FI was more frequent and severe in women, in NHR and in those with neuropsychiatric disorders. Urinary incontinence was associated in half of patients with FI.