Anorectal Malformations

Anorectal Malformations

Learn about common surgeries and conditions treated at Penn State Children’s Hospital. Our Pediatric Surgery team is experienced in many areas.

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Anorectal malformations ("imperforate anus" and related problems)

Developmental diseases of the rectum and anus, including "imperforate anus" (where the opening to the anus is missing, blocked or abnormally located), are uncommon. The pediatric surgeons at Penn State Children's Hospital are a regional resource for children born with these unusual disorders. 

Most of the time, anorectal malformations are recognized when a baby is examined at birth. They range in severity from minor abnormalities that might not require any surgical treatment to severe problems that require several stages of surgical correction. 

Surgical correction of anorectal malformations involves re-locating the abnormally positioned anus and rectum properly in the muscles of the pelvis. The pediatric surgeons at Penn State Children's Hospital perform the operations to correct anorectal malformations. 

Even after surgical correction, many of these children will have problems with continence and control). The pediatric surgeons at Penn State Children's Hospital help patients and their families with "bowel management" to help each child achieve continence. This commitment begins at the time of diagnosis and continues throughout infancy, childhood and adolescence.

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