Long-term outcome of transanal irrigation for children with spina bifida

E. K. Choi, S. W. Han, S. H. Shin, Y. Ji, J. H. Chon, Y. J. Im

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Study design: Experimental, prospective study. Objectives: We evaluated the long-term clinical efficacy of transanal irrigation (TAI) and its effect on the quality of life of spina bifida children and their caregivers. Setting: Republic of Korea.Method:Forty-four spina bifida pediatric patients with constipation, fecal incontinence or both, underwent a TAI program at our spina bifida clinic between December 2010 and October 2013. The children and their caregivers were evaluated using a self-administered questionnaire before TAI and at 3 months and 3 years after initiation of the program. Results: Successful treatment outcome was achieved in 38 (86.4%) children after a mean follow-up duration of 33 months (range, 30-36). The mean number of fecal incontinence episodes per week, the number of diaper changes and the total time for bowel care per day before the program decreased at the latest follow-up examination from 7.3 to 0.4 (P<0.001), 1.6 to 0.2 (P<0.001) and 29.2 to 19.4 min (P=0.038), respectively. These results remained constant from short-term follow-up at 3 months to 3 years. Caregivers and children could go out more often (P=0.002), and the emotional impact of bowel care on caregivers decreased (P<0.001). The reported mean overall satisfaction with TAI was 8/10. The common adverse effect during TAI was abdominal discomfort (60.5%). Conclusion: We observed a sustained significant improvement in defecation symptoms and quality of life for 3 years in spina bifida children who underwent continuous TAI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-220
Number of pages5
JournalSpinal Cord
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Mar 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 International Spinal Cord Society.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Rehabilitation
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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