Role of Autologous Fat Grafting in the Conservative Treatment of Fecal Incontinence in Children

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Treatment of organic fecal incontinence in children, typical of anorectal malformations, is most often conservative; however, when necessary, it can be surgical. Autologous fat grafting, or lipofilling, can be used to improve fecal incontinence. We present our experience with the echoassisted anal-lipofilling and its effects on fecal incontinence in children and on the quality of life of the entire family. Under general anesthesia, fat tissue was harvested according to the traditional technique, and processed in a closed system Lipogems® set. Injection of the processed adipose tissue was guided by trans-anal ultrasound assistance. Ultrasound and manometry were also used for follow-up. From November 2018, we performed 12 anal-lipofilling procedures in six male patients (mean age 10.7 years). Five children had a stable improvement in bowel function with Krickenbeck’s scale scores going from soiling grade 3 pre-treatment in 100% of children to grade 1 post-treatment in 75% of them. No major post-operative complications developed. An increase in thickness of the sphincteric apparatus was shown at ultrasound during follow-up. The quality of life of the entire family, evaluated with a questionnaire, improved after the surgical treatment of the children. Anallipofilling is a safe and effective procedure to reduce organic fecal incontinence thereby benefiting both the patients and their families.


Valentina Pinto, Marco Pignatti, Giovanni Parente, Neil Di Salvo, Luca Contu and Mario Lima.


Journal of Clinical Medicine