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J Pediatr Surg. 2001 Aug;36(8):1227-30.

Antegrade continence enemas in the treatment of slow-transit constipation.

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  • 1F. Douglas Stephens Surgical Research Laboratory, Murdoch Children's Research Institute, Department of General Surgery, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.



Children with anorectal dysfunction can now be treated by antegrade continence enema (ACE), as described Malone et al. Those with idiopathic constipation, however, are not thought to be suitable for this treatment. Over 150 children attend the authors' department with proven slow transit constipation (mostly proven on nuclear transit/X-ray study), and the authors reviewed the outcome in the 40 of these who have had the ACE procedure. Families completed a questionnaire and attended interview with an independent assessor.


Of the 40 patients, 32 patients were assessed. Follow-up ranged from 3 to 54 months (median, 18 months) and age ranged from 5 to 17 years (median age, 10 years). Three of 32 stomas were no longer in use. Frequency of soiling was reduced significantly in 20 patients, and a further 6 patients were clean (P <.01). Abdominal pains were relieved significantly (P <.05), and appetite and mood improved.


Stomal complications were frequent, (stenosis in 16 of 29, mucus leak in 20 of 29, fecal leak 3 of 29, catheter-related pain in 20 of 29). Slow evacuation (12 of 29) and pain with enema (17 of 20) also were common.


Malone appendicostomy does improve the well being of patients with slow transit constipation, but the advantages are less dramatic than in children with normal motility.

Copyright 2001 by W.B. Saunders Company.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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