According to the Colorectal Surgical Society of Australia and New Zealand approximately 5% of the Australian population suffer from faecal incontinence, with rates increasing sharply once they reach sixty-five years of age. Continence (or urgency) problems can have a profound impact upon patients with many sufferers experiencing several episodes of leakage a day, where they have to change their clothes, become house bound and unable to confidently engage in social or work related activities. The most common cause of continence problems is injury to muscles or nerves of the anal sphincter through childbirth or rectal prolapse.
The muscles of the pelvic floor, urethral sphincters, bladder and anal sphincter muscles are all controlled by the brain through nerves that run from the sacral area.
Specialists at the Australian Centre for Bladder and Bowel Incontinence provide a range of procedural interventions including Sacral Nerve Stimulation.