Pelvic floor physiology

D. A. Cherry, D. A. Rothenberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Pelvic floor physiology is poorly understood. At the site of the puborectalis muscle, unique forces act to create both a flutter valve and the anorectal angle with the flap valve. Extrinsic and intrinsic pressures at this level are critical, although many other factors interact in a complex way to provide normal continence and defecation. Not surprisingly, therefore, no single test permits a complete assessment. Although clinical evaluation is the cornerstone of the diagnosis of pelvic floor disorders, anorectal physiologic testing has contributed significantly to our understanding of the dynamics of the pelvic floor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1217-1230
Number of pages14
JournalSurgical Clinics of North America
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes


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