- Involuntary defecation at inappropriate times, occurring after the typical age of completed toilet training (generally 4 years).
- In most cases, caused by overflow soiling associated with chronic constipation and severe faecal impaction in an otherwise healthy child without underlying anatomical abnormalities.
- May have a significant negative impact on the quality of life for the child and the family.
- A thorough history and physical examination are the crux of diagnosis. Laboratory and radiological studies may be used on a case-by-case basis to determine the underlying aetiology.
- The goal of therapy is for patient to stool 1 to 3 times per day in the toilet with no episodes of soiling.
- Treatment involves complete colon disimpaction, long-term treatment with laxatives and stool softeners, and bowel re-education. Any underlying causes should also be addressed.
Other related conditions
- Depression in children
- Spina bifida and neural tube defects
- Contact dermatitis
- Assessment of acute diarrhoea
- Constipation in children
- Anorectal abscess
- Spinal cord compression
- Spinal stenosis
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Faecal incontinence in adults
- Primary hypothyroidism
- Central hypothyroidism
- Coeliac disease
- Cystic fibrosis
Last updated: Mar 25, 2013