Pediatric Surgery International

, Volume 31, Issue 8, pp 719–724 | Cite as

Rectal prolapse in older children associated with behavioral and psychiatric disorders

  • Shelley Reynolds Hill
  • Peter F. Ehrlich
  • Barbara Felt
  • Dawn Dore-Stites
  • Kim Erickson
  • Daniel H. TeitelbaumEmail author
Original Article



Rectal prolapse (RP) beyond infancy is challenging, and despite surgical correction, recurrences are not uncommon, suggesting that underlying contributing processes may have a role. This study highlights a previously poorly recognized relationship between RP in older children and behavioral/psychiatric disorders (BPD). We describe the incidence of recurrence and use of behavioral, psychological and physical therapeutic tactics in a multidisciplinary approach to pediatric RP.


A retrospective 20-year review of RP in children >3 years of age was adopted. Charts were reviewed for gastrointestinal, connective tissue, and BPD conditions, incidence of recurrence, and therapies employed including surgery, behavioral, and physical therapy.


45 patients were included, ranging from 3 to 18 years of age; 29 males. Thirty-seven underwent surgery. Six of the 45 were excluded as they had gastrointestinal or connective tissue conditions placing them at risk for prolapse. Over half (21/39, 53 %) had BPD. Slightly more than half of patients had a recurrence, but there was no increased risk in those with associated BPD. While all 21 underwent some therapy for their BPD, over the past 5 years we have enrolled eight of these patients into a program of behavioral and/or physical therapy with all reporting reductions in frequency and severity of prolapse after initiating pelvic floor strengthening, behavior modification, and biofeedback, and avoidance of surgery in three.


This study highlights an important group of pediatric patients with RP that may well benefit from a combination of behavioral therapy, physical therapy as well as surgical intervention to obtain the most optimal outcome.


Rectal prolapse Procedentia Behavioral pediatrics 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shelley Reynolds Hill
    • 1
  • Peter F. Ehrlich
    • 1
  • Barbara Felt
    • 2
  • Dawn Dore-Stites
    • 2
  • Kim Erickson
    • 3
  • Daniel H. Teitelbaum
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Section of Pediatric Surgery, Department of SurgeryMott Children’s HospitalAnn ArborUSA
  2. 2.Division of Behavioral Pediatrics, Department of PediatricsUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA
  3. 3.Department of Physical TherapyUniversity of Michigan Health SystemsAnn ArborUSA

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