Diagnostic approach to faecal incontinence: What test and when to perform?

Wisam Sbeit, Tawfik Khoury, Amir Mari

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Faecal incontinence (FI) is a debilitating common end result of several diseases affecting the quality of life and leading to patient disability, morbidity, and increased societal burden. Given the various causes of FI, it is important to assess and identify the underlying pathomechanisms. Several investigatory tools are available including high-resolution anorectal manometry, transrectal ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging, and electromyography. This review article provides an overview on the causes and pathophysiology of FI and the author’s perspective of the stepwise investigation of patients with FI based on the available literature. Overall, high-resolution anorectal manometry should be the first investigatory tool for FI, followed by either transrectal ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging for anal internal sphincter and external anal sphincter injury, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1553-1562
Number of pages10
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number15
StatePublished - 21 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2021. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Faecal
  • Incontinence
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Manometry
  • Rectal
  • Ultrasound


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