Fecal incontinence is the loss of control over the bowels. Some people may have uncontrolled release of just gas and liquid stool. Others have no control over the release of solid waste. Many people with this condition also have trouble controlling the release of urine.
This condition can lead to issues, such as depression or isolation. If you think you have this condition, contact your doctor right away.
Women are more likely to suffer from this condition than men are. Many cases are a result of an injury to the pelvic floor. The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that support pelvic organs. Injury can happen through pregnancy or delivery. Other causes include:
- Rectal prolapse
- Congenital abnormality (condition present from birth)
- Trauma or injury to anal sphincter or its nerves (the healthy sphincter opens and closes to control the release of fecal material)
- Scarring of the rectum from irritable bowel syndrome, radiation therapy, or surgery
- Anal abscess or perirectal abscess
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
Last reviewedMarch 2013by Daus Mahnke, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.