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Bowel Incontinence

When you experience loss of bowel control or bowel leakage, you may avoid talking about it with anyone, including your doctor. According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, millions of Americans are dealing with fecal incontinence issues, or urinary incontinence issues

Whether you experience an occasional leakage, fecal urgency, or a total loss of control, our women’s health specialists can diagnose and treat your fecal incontinence. Don’t let this common condition stop you from doing the things you love.

Fecal Incontinence Causes

There are many reasons you may be experiencing loss of bowel control. It could be from urgency or damage to the muscles and nerves surrounding your rectum. It can affect people of all ages, but it is more common as you age, and women often experience it more than men.

Causes of fecal incontinence include:

  • Bowel surgery
  • Cancer and cancer treatment
  • Certain foods
  • Childbirth 
  • Chronic constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Hemorrhoids 
  • Laxative abuse
  • Muscle or nerve damage 
  • Pelvic organ prolapse 

Fecal Incontinence Treatment

The women’s health specialists at Bassett Healthcare Network will perform a thorough physical exam and may order additional tests such as blood tests and imaging studies. 

For many women, simple treatments such as developing a regular bathroom schedule, diet, or exercises can help improve symptoms. Depending on the cause of your incontinence, you may benefit from medications or nerve stimulation.

If medicine and lifestyle changes don’t improve your symptoms, surgery may be recommended. Surgical treatments for bowel incontinence include:

  • Hemorrhoid removal
  • Rectum prolapse surgery
  • Sphincter repair or replacement
  • Colostomy

Comprehensive Care for Fecal Incontinence

If you are experiencing loss of bowel control or another urogynecology/pelvic floor disorder, contact our women’s health specialists to request an appointment and learn more. We offer a complete range of diagnostic and treatment options to help you with your fecal incontinence.

Bassett Healthcare Network offers diagnosis and treatment for fecal incontinence in Central New York, including in Cooperstown, Cobleskill, Hamilton, Herkimer, and Oneonta.