Biofeedback Treatment Can Improve Clinical Condition and Quality of Life in Patients with Pelvic Floor Dyssynergy with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Prospective Cohort Study

Foroogh Alborzi Avanaki, Sara Rafiee, Hesam Aldin Varpaei, Mohammad Taher, Najmeh Aletaha, Farshad Allameh



Chronic constipation is a common health concern. Defecatory disorders are considered one of the mechanisms of chronic idiopathic constipation. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of concurrent irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) on the success rate and response to biofeedback therapy in patients with chronic constipation and pelvic floor dyssynergia.


This prospective cohort study was performed at the Imam Khomeini Hospital Complex in Tehran from October 2020 to July 2021. Patients aged 18–70 years with chronic constipation and pelvic floor dyssynergia (PFD) confirmed by clinical examination, anorectal manometry, balloon expulsion test, and/or defecography were included. All patients failed to respond to treatment with lifestyle modifications and laxative use. The diagnosis of IBS was based on the ROME IV criteria. Biofeedback was educated and recommended to all patients. We used three different metrics to assess the patient's response to biofeedback: 1) constipation score (questionnaire), 2) lifestyle score (questionnaire), and 3) manometry findings (gastroenterologist report).


 Forty patients were included in the final analysis, of which 7 men (17.5%) and 21 (52.2%) had IBS. The mean age of the study population was 37.7±11.4. The average resting pressure decreased in response to treatment; however, this decrease was statistically significant only in non-IBS patients (p=0.007). Patients with and without IBS showed an increase in the percentage of anal sphincter relaxation in response to treatment, but this difference was not statistically significant. Although the first sensation decreased in both groups, this decrease was not statistically significant. Overall, the clinical response was the same across IBS and non-IBS patients, but constipation and lifestyle scores decreased significantly in both groups of patients with and without IBS (p <0.001).


Biofeedback treatment appears to improve the clinical condition and quality of life of patients with pelvic floor dyssynergia. Considering that a better effect of biofeedback in correcting some manometric parameters has been seen in patients with IBS, it seems that paying attention to the association between these two diseases can be helpful in deciding on treatment.


Biofeedback treatment; Pelvic floor dyssynergia; Irritable bowel syndrome; Treatment; Anal resting pressure; Anal sphincter relaxation

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