360˚ Endorectal Ultrasound
Endorectal ultrasound is yet another diagnostic tool that can be used in assessing and managing patients with fecal incontinence. It can detect external and internal anal sphincter defects in these patients, confirming what may be seen following an Anorectal Manometry diagnostic study. It can assess and evaluate the structure of the sphincter muscle and surrounding tissue.
There is little to no preparation for an Endorectal Ultrasound to be performed. The patient is placed in the left lateral decubitus position. A condom filled with ultrasound conductive gel is placed over the ultrasound transducer, lubricated with gel, and then gently inserted into the anal canal. The 360˚ Endorectal Ultrasound is relatively well-tolerated by most patients.
Endorectal ultrasound can then provide an image of the anal sphincter musculature and other pelvic floor structures, such as the puborectalis, along with the external and internal sphincter. Certain defects or pelvic floor injuries can be identified. The images can be stored with measurements and defects labeled, which can then transfer easily and become a part of the patients’ (electronic) medical records.