Neurogenic Bowel: Traditional Approaches and Clinical Pearls

Margaret Jones*, Stephanie Hendrick

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of Review: To describe management options used for neurogenic bowel dysfunction (NBD) in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI). Recent Findings: Approach to treatment for NBD in SCI is primarily derived from traditional approaches and historical guidelines. Large formal randomized control trials and recent high-quality studies on NBD management are sparse. Advances in SCI research are transitioning focus to emerging technologies as well as addressing quality of life (QOL). Recent literature suggests that ongoing challenges remain in NBD management as it pertains to QOL, social activities, and life participation. Summary: The current and traditional approaches to NBD have led to relative success in maintaining continence and minimizing associated complications in the SCI population. Management should remain rooted in identifying patient goals and working toward improving QOL. As newer practices emerge, providers should continue to critically review existing and novel recommendations for NBD management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-187
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020


  • Fecal incontinence
  • Lower motor neuron bowel
  • Neurogenic bowel dysfunction
  • Neurogenic bowel management
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Upper motor neuron bowel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


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