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J Dev Behav Pediatr. 1995 Aug;16(4):226-32.

Functional encopresis: symptom reduction and behavioral improvement.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, USA.


This study assessed the relationship between functional encopresis and accompanying problems: emotional, behavioral, and social. Symptom resolution and changes in these concomitant problems were studied. Seventy-six children, 6 to 12 years of age, enrolled in this "self-selected," nonequivalent, control (contrast) group research design with 38 children in each group. Using the Child Behavior Checklist, children were tested before treatment and 6 months later. The results showed that children with encopresis had significantly more emotional/behavioral problems and poorer social competence before treatment than children in the contrast group; combined medical and psychotherapeutic intervention led to a significant reduction in soiling frequency, and children with encopresis experienced significantly fewer behavioral problems and significantly improved social competence after treatment. There was a small group of children for whom treatment was difficult. The data suggest that highly elevated behavior problem scores, especially in association with parental negativeness, may be related to poor treatment outcome.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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