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How does a digital rectal exam help diagnose fecal incontinence?

A digital rectal exam is one of the more common tests used to diagnose fecal incontinence and its cause. For this procedure, your doctor will examine your rectum with a finger. The finger, will be gloved and lubricated for your comfort and safety. Your doctor will feel for any structural flaws or damage in the rectum. You may be asked to bear down or squeeze the doctor's finger with your rectal muscles, so that the doctor can evaluate your rectal muscle strength.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.