Dyschezia refers to painful or difficult passage of stools. Criteria for its diagnosis in infants were reported at the Rome II conference.


Possible mechanism: failure to coordinate increases in intra-abdominal pressure and relaxation of the pelvic floor during passage of stool.



(1) episodes last >= 10 minutes (may be up to 20 minutes), often with several episodes per day

(2) straining, screaming and crying while trying to evacuate stool

(3) infant < 6 months of age

(4) otherwise healthy (not caused by an underlying disease)


Examination of the infant includes documentation of normal growth and development and exclusion of anorectal abnormalities.


Usually symptoms resolve within a few weeks.


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