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Gastroenterology Research and Practice
Volume 2016, Article ID 4101248, 5 pages
Research Article

Influence of Rectal Decompression on Abdominal Symptoms and Anorectal Physiology following Colonoscopy in Healthy Adults

Department of Medicine, Hualien Tzu Chi Hospital, Buddhist Tzu Chi Medical Foundation and Tzu Chi University, Hualien 97002, Taiwan

Received 17 June 2016; Accepted 31 July 2016

Academic Editor: Branka Filipović

Copyright © 2016 Chih-Hsun Yi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Postcolonoscopy abdominal discomfort and bloating are common. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether rectal decompression improved distension-induced abdominal symptoms and influenced anorectal physiology. Methods. In 15 healthy subjects, rectal distension was achieved by direct air inflation into the rectum by colonoscopy. Placement of rectal and sham tube was then performed in each subject on a separate occasion. The anorectal parameters and distension-induced abdominal symptoms were recorded. Results. Anorectal parameters were similar between placements of rectal tube and sham tube except for greater rectal compliance with rectal tube than with sham tube (). Abdominal pain and bloating were significantly reduced by rectal tube and sham tube at 1 minute (both ) and 3 minutes (both ). After placement of rectal tube, abdominal pain at 3 minutes correlated positively with first sensation (, ), and bloating at 3 minutes also correlated positively with urge sensation (, ). Conclusions. Rectal decompression with either rectal or sham tube improved distension-induced abdominal symptoms. Our study indicates that the mechanisms that improved abdominal symptoms by rectal decompression might be mediated by a central pathway instead of a peripheral mechanism.