The preservation of anal sphincter function and intestinal continuity and the avoidance of the need for permanent ileostomy or colostomy are of utmost importance. Very few operations require that the muscles of control be sacrificed. In many others, however, the preservation of continence is determined by the knowledge and skill of the surgeon. Drs. Launer, Worsey and Salganick are continuously refining their techniques of sphincter saving operations for cancer of the colon and rectum, Crohn's Disease , Ulcerative Colitis .
Repair of anal sphincters damaged by prior surgery and childbirth injuries is also an interest to us. Techniques are now available to assess sphincter function by Anal Manometry, Endoanal ultrasound , Fluoroscopic Defacography and nerve testing. These simple tests help define the cause and location of anal sphincter injuries so that reconstructive operations can be precisely designed.