Functional fecal incontinence can be diagnosed using criteria from the Rome II conference.


Criteria for functional fecal incontinence:

(1) duration of disorder >= 1 month

(2) recurrent, uncontrolled passage of fecal material

(3) person has a developmental age of >= 4 years

(4) one or more of the following:

(4a) fecal impaction

(4b) diarrhea

(4c) non-structural anal sphincter dysfunction

(5) exclusion of other causes of incontinence as the sole cause of the incontinence



• Structural anal sphincter dysfunction includes sphincter muscle injury and nerve injury.

• A patient may have mixed fecal incontinence due to both a structural lesion and functional incontinence.

• Functional fecal incontinence may coexist with the irritable bowel syndrome.


Other causes of incontinence include:

(1) rectal prolapse

(2) mental incompetence

(3) willful soiling

(4) poor hygiene


To read more or access our algorithms and calculators, please log in or register.