Constipation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Scopus citations

Abstract

Chronic constipation is a common disorder manifested by a variety of symptoms. Assessments of colonic transit and anorectal functions are used to categorize constipated patients into three groups, i.e., normal transit or irritable bowel syndrome, pelvic floor dysfunction (i.e., functional defaecatory disorders) and slow transit constipation. 'Slow transit' constipation is a clinical syndrome attributed to ineffective colonic propulsion and/or increased resistance to propagation of colonic contents. Defaecatory disorders are caused by insufficient relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles or a failure to generate adequate propulsive forces during defaecation. Colonic transit is often delayed in patients with functional defaecatory disorders. Normal and slow transit constipation are generally managed with medications; surgery is necessary for a minority of patients with slow transit constipation. Functional defaecatory disorders are primarily treated with pelvic floor retraining using biofeedback therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)709-731
Number of pages23
JournalBest Practice and Research in Clinical Gastroenterology
Volume21
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2007

Keywords

  • anorectal
  • constipation
  • laxatives
  • pelvic floor
  • slow transit

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

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