British Journal of Surgery vol:91 issue:11 pages:1500-5
BACKGROUND: Postoperative constipation is a common problem with most mesh suspension techniques used to correct rectal prolapse. Autonomic denervation of the rectum subsequent to its complete mobilization has been suggested as a contributory factor. The aim of this study was to assess the long-term outcome of patients who underwent a novel, autonomic nerve-sparing, laparoscopic technique for rectal prolapse. METHODS: Between 1995 and 1999, 42 patients had laparoscopic ventral rectopexy for total rectal prolapse. The long-term results after a median follow-up of 61 (range 29-98) months were analysed. RESULTS: There were no major postoperative complications. Late recurrence occurred in two patients. In 28 of 31 patients with incontinence there was a significant improvement in continence. Symptoms of obstructed defaecation resolved in 16 of 19 patients. During follow-up, new onset of mild obstructed defaecation was noted in only two patients. Symptoms suggestive of slow-transit colonic obstipation were not induced. CONCLUSION: Laparoscopic ventral rectopexy is an effective technique for the correction of rectal prolapse and appears to avoid severe postoperative constipation. The ventral position of the prosthesis may explain the beneficial effect on symptoms of obstructed defaecation.