Aim of the study
To conduct a survey of current practice in the management of obstetrical anal sphincter injuries (OASI) and to compare short, medium and long-term practices according to the specialty of the surgeon.
Patients and methods
A 50-item questionnaire was addressed by mail to various specialists via the national learned societies. The questionnaire was addressed only to practitioners who currently managed OASI in their practice.
Of the 135 healthcare professionals who responded, 57 were sub-specialists in ano-rectal surgery (42.2%) and 78 were obstetrical or gynecological specialists (OB-GYN) (57.8%). Management in the acute period after OASI was similar among the specialties and 50% of the practitioners did not perform suture repair of the internal sphincter. Furthermore, few gynecological specialists recommended systematic consultation with an ano-rectal specialist during acute management. In the medium term, ano-rectal specialists were more likely to explore gastro-intestinal symptoms, either clinically or through para-clinical studies. However, these studies did not systematically lead to interventional management in the absence of consensus, particularly for medium-term sphincter repair. In addition, 25% of practitioners recommended that patients undergo systematic delivery by caesarean section for further pregnancies after OASI. In the long term (>12 months), there were substantial differences in management of OASI not only between specialties but also within the same specialty.
The various specialists should coordinate to propose multidisciplinary recommendations on the management of OASI.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Obstetric anal sphincter injury, Anal incontinence, Management, Caesarean section