A Practical Guide to Biofeedback Therapy for Pelvic Floor Disorders

Susrutha Puthanmadhom Narayanan, Adil Eddie Bharucha

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Purpose of Review: Biofeedback therapy (BFT) is effective for managing pelvic floor disorders (i.e., defecatory disorders and fecal incontinence). However, even in controlled clinical trials, only approximately 60% of patients with defecatory disorders experienced long-term improvement. The review serves to update practitioners on recent advances and to identify practical obstacles to providing biofeedback therapy. Recent Findings: The efficacy and safety of biofeedback therapy have been evaluated in defecatory disorders, fecal incontinence, and levator ani syndrome. Recent studies looked at outcomes in specific patient sub-populations and predictors of a response to biofeedback therapy. Summary: Biofeedback therapy is effective for managing defecatory disorders, fecal incontinence, and levator ani syndrome. Patients who have a lower bowel satisfaction score and use digital maneuvers fare better. Biofeedback therapy is recommended for patients with fecal incontinence who do not respond to conservative management. A subset of patients with levator ani syndrome who have dyssynergic defecation are more likely to respond to biofeedback therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number21
JournalCurrent gastroenterology reports
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2019



  • Biofeedback therapy
  • Defecation disorder
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Levator ani syndrome
  • Pelvic floor dysfunction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

Cite this