Physiologic Testing

  • Anders F. Mellgren


Functional anorectal symptoms are common and affect all ages of the population.1 Normal anorectal physiologic function is complex and relies on a multiplicity of factors, including a intact anatomy and an intact link between somatic and visceral function of the anus rectum and colon. Consequently, a comprehensive evaluation of anorectal function demands a combination of several tests that complement each other. There is no single test that can comprehensively assess the function of the pelvic floor. In the clinical setting, physiologic testing should always be a complement to a proper patient history, physical examination, and frequently other tests including endoscopy and other imaging studies. The history may be complemented by use of questionnaires and quality of life instruments. The clinical utility of some physiologic testing is limited because of a lack of reference data from healthy individuals and lack of standardization.



This chapter was written by Lee E. Smith and Garnet J. Blatchford in the first edition of this textbook.


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Copyright information

© ASCRS (American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anders F. Mellgren
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Director, Department of Colon and Rectal SurgeryUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  2. 2.Pelvic Floor CenterMinneapolisUSA

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