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Semin Pediatr Surg. 2010 May;19(2):160-7. doi: 10.1053/j.sempedsurg.2009.11.021.

Outcome of anorectal malformations and Hirschsprung's disease beyond childhood.

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  • 1Section of Pediatric Surgery, Hospital for Children and Adolescents, University of Helsinki, FIN-00029Helsinki, Finland.


Anorectal malformations (ARMs) and Hirschsprung disease (HD) are the most common congenital colorectal defects in the newborn. The outcomes of HD and ARMs have improved significantly because of improved understanding of the pathologic anatomy and physiology of these defects and of the modern surgical techniques. Still, many patients suffer from defective bowel control even as adults. Some of these also have problems with urinary control and sexual functions. The functional problems are more pronounced in patients with ARMs. Compared with healthy people, both patients with ARMs and those with HD have limitations in their quality of life. Inferior quality of life is more common in patients with ARMs. There are very few published data on long-term outcome of adults with ARMs and HD. The effect of aging on the functional outcome and quality of life remains unclear, although some preliminary data suggest that the bowel function and quality of life may deteriorate with aging.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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