Bowel irrigation and LARS

Transanal irrigation and LARS

Research is an integral part of any healthcare environment, yielding enrichment of clinical management and generating continued learning and development. This concept that has been employed for many years by Professor Rosen of the Sigmund Freud University in Vienna, with a particular interest in management of low anterior resection syndrome (LARS).

His recent publication ‘“Prophylactic” transanal irrigation (TAI) to prevent symptoms of low anterior resection syndrome (LARS) after rectal resection: results at 12-month follow-up of a controlled randomized multicenter trial’ is a follow up to his published work of a randomized controlled trial (RCT) in 2019.

The 12 months follow up indicates that TAI can reduce defecation episodes during the day and night, as well as decrease the LARS score. However, despite showing beneficial effects, the research raises several questions that will require future trials.

Nevertheless, Professor Rosen and his team recognize that the result of the initial randomized controlled trial in 2019 suggests that patients must be informed preoperatively about the possibility of LARS, as well as the chance to influence symptoms with TAI. A model introduced and published by Deborah Sumner from Watford Hospital in September 2019.

Great to see that LARS remains on the research map, which can only facilitate and support future treatment options, as well as improve of quality of life.

Brigitte Collins
Global Clinical Education Manager

Dr. Rosen: “Taking into account that LARS has to be expected as a frequent problem following low anterior resection (40-80%) the results of our trial indicate that this fact as well as the available therapies should be discussed with patients during the preoperative counseling. In addition, TAI has proven to be helpful in overcoming some of the symptoms associated with LARS, thus giving patients the chance to return back to their normal social and professional life after surgery. However, the results of our trial also show that some open questions still remain to be answered (e.g. the optimal irrigation volume etc.) and will be the topic of research in the future” 

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