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Nerve Stimulation Device Approved to Restore Bowel Control

Nerve Stimulation Device Approved to Restore Bowel Control


MONDAY, April 4 (HealthDay News) -- Medtronic's InterStim implanted electrical stimulation device has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help restore bowel control in people with chronic fecal incontinence, the company said in a news release.

InterStim -- comprised of a thin wire lead and an implanted pacemaker-like device -- uses mild electrical stimulation of the sacral nerves to affect pelvic muscles and the bowel. It improved or restored bowel control in 80 percent of people who failed more conservative therapies or weren't candidates for those therapies, Medtronic said.

The device had already been approved by the FDA to treat symptoms of overactive bladder and non-obstructive urinary retention, the company said.

The most common side effects reported during clinical testing included implant site pain, a sensation of skin tingling or numbness, and implant site infection.

More than 18 million Americans have fecal incontinence, according to U.S. Government statistics cited by Medtronic, based in Minneapolis.

More information

To learn more about fecal incontinence, visit the U.S. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse.

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Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


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