Colorectal-Bowel Management Program

Children with colorectal disorders often require the care of a pediatric gastroenterologist and pediatric surgeon. The CHOC Colorectal / Bowel Management Program brings together the expertise of our renowned pediatric gastroenterologists and pediatric surgeons who together work with patients and their families to develop short- and long-term plans that include surgical interventions and follow-up care.

The Only Dedicated Pediatric Colorectal Treatment Program in the Region

The CHOC Colorectal / Bowel Management Program specializes in providing expert diagnosis and second opinions for colorectal disorders, and developing personalized treatment plans using advanced diagnostics and the latest, research-based treatment options. We also provide specialized, ongoing care to children who are experiencing complications such as constipation and incontinence after having undergone surgeries to correct colorectal disorders. We are the only program in the region to provide the multidisciplinary care of a pediatric gastroenterologist and pediatric surgeon in one convenient appointment. We proudly offer:

  • Diagnosis and treatment planning. Upon referral, patients undergo tests to determine the best way to care for their colorectal condition.
  • Specialized colorectal surgery. If surgery is determined to be the best treatment option for your child’s colorectal disorder, the gastroenterologist and surgeon work with you to explain the surgery and what life will be like for your child after surgery. Your child’s gastroenterologist will accompany the surgeon during many procedures, meaning that your child will benefit from the expertise of both physicians when he or she needs it most.
  • Long-term postoperative colorectal care. Most children require long-term follow-up care after colorectal surgery. This incredible long-term medical management is available not only to patients who have received their surgical treatment at CHOC, but also to those who have not. Some patients may need to be seen in our clinic on a monthly basis (or more as needed) while other patients may need to be seen three to four times each year.

Our Colorectal / Bowel Management Program team is dedicated to the long-term well-being and needs of all our patients—throughout childhood and beyond.

What We Treat

Patients are referred to the Colorectal / Bowel Management Program for advanced testing and treatment of colorectal disorders, including:

Care and Compassion Now and in the Future

CHOC’s pediatric gastroenterologists and surgeons believe that testing and treatment should be individualized for your child’s medical and emotional needs, while always being mindful of your family’s values. We work with you to make sure all of your concerns regarding your child’s medical issues are addressed, and that you understand the testing strategies and treatment options available for your child’s condition.

Advanced Diagnostics and Individualized Treatment

Colorectal disorders are complex. Our multidisciplinary team works together using advanced diagnostics to create treatment plans that are mindful of your child’s medical, physical and emotional needs both now and in the future.

A non-invasive test that measures rectal nerve reflexes, pressure of the anal sphincter, coordination between the muscles involved in defecation, and the ability to squeeze and sense. It provides insight into the underlying problems in the mechanics of defecation.
Scheduled sessions involve patients using their abdominal and rectal muscles to control computer programs much like a video game. The goal of this type of treatment is to “retrain” the coordination between the muscles and nerves that are used for bowel movements.
Botulinum toxin injections are used to relieve increased pressures in the anus in conditions such as anal achalasia or post-surgical Hirschsprung’s disease patients.
This is a procedure to relieve severe constipation that does not respond to medications.
This test measures contractions in the colon. It provides an understanding of the underlying movement in the colon.
This study measures the time needed for stool to pass through the gastrointestinal tract, and utilizes X-rays and radio-opaque markers.
Defecography uses an X-ray to look at the shape and position of the rectum as it empties.