Fecal incontinence (also called anal incontinence) occurs when a woman is not able to control her bowel movements, resulting in accidental passing of stool. This problem affects an estimated 7% of women. Anal incontinence is more common with vaginal delivery than cesarean section because of the potential for damage to the anorectum during vaginal delivery. However, anal incontinence is more common following childbirth of any form, including cesarean section.
Risk factors include childbirth, vaginal delivery, the use of forceps during to assist vaginal delivery, episiotomy or natural tearing of the tissues during vaginal delivery, aging, neurological conditions, and chronic constipation.
Bowel control problems affect at least 1 million people in the United States. Many women are not comfortable talking about bowel control problems. The doctors at Keil Urogynecology are specialists in diagnosing and treating pelvic floor disorders and can offer help if you are experiencing fecal incontinence or chronic constipation.