Operation for Rectal Prolapse (Thiersch)

  • Jameson L. Chassin


Prolapse of the rectum is, in fact, a form of intussusception with the proximal rectum and the sigmoid colon sliding through the anal canal to the outside. The concept behind the Thiersch operation is to prevent this intussusception by narrowing the diameter of the anal canal. This may be accomplished by encircling the anal sphincters with a heavy No. 20 SWG silver wire. By tying the encircling ligature with sufficient tension, intussusception and prolapse is prevented. Unfortunately, in patients who have large prolapses the wire either breaks, producing a recurrence of the prolapse, or the wire cuts through the tissues, causing an infection (Goligher). In the latter case the wire must be removed. It is uncommon for the wire repairs to last more than 1–2 years subsequent to operation.


Index Finger Anal Sphincter Anal Canal Rectal Prolapse Polypropylene Mesh 


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  1. Goligher JC (1980) Surgery of the anus, rectum and colon, 4th ed. Balliere Tindall, LondonGoogle Scholar
  2. Lomas ML, Cooperman H (1972) Correction of rectal procidentia by use of polypropylene mesh ( Marlex ). Dis Colon Rectum 15: 416Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jameson L. Chassin
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.New York University School of MedicineUSA
  2. 2.Booth Memorial Medical CenterFlushingUSA
  3. 3.University Hospital, New York University Medical CenterUSA
  4. 4.New York Veterans Administration HospitalUSA
  5. 5.Bellevue HospitalUSA

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