Transducer manometry and the effect of body position on anal canal pressures

G. P. Johnson, J. H. Pemberton, J. Ness, M. Samson, A. R. Zinsmeister

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Anal canal manometry is performed conventionally with balloons, sleeves, perfused or nonperfused open-tipped catheters, or with multiport probes. The authors constructed a new manometer with four transducers embedded in a probe (15 mm outside diameter) and oriented radially, 90‡ apart. The transducer probe was validated in 27 healthy volunteers by comparing its performance to that of a standard four-port perfused manometer and then used to measure anal canal and rectal pressures in body positions more physiologic (standing, sitting) than that usually employed (left lateral) for such measurements. Both devices measured similar anal canal resting pressure in the left lateral position (mid canal, 58±3 mm Hg perfusedvs.62±4 mm Hg transducer;P>0.05). The transducer probe, however, recorded higher squeeze pressures (mid canal, 100±6 mm Hg perfusedvs.143±14 mm Hg transducer;P<0.05). The transducer probe detected higher intrarectal and resting anal canal pressures when subjects were standing or sitting, compared with the left lateral position (rectum, 3±1 mm Hg left lateral; 17±2 mm Hg standing; 20±1 mm Hg sitting; P<0.05; mid anal canal, 57±3 mm Hg left lateral; 86±4 mm Hg standing; 81±5 mm Hg sitting, P<0.05). The rise in resting anal canal pressure was uniform circumferentially. Neither anal canal length nor squeeze pressure changed with change in position. The authors concluded that 1) transducer manometry recorded similar resting but higher squeeze pressures compared with perfused manometry; 2) transducer manometry recorded the same radial variation in anal canal resting and squeeze pressures as that recorded by the perfused manometer; and 3) standing and sitting caused a four-fold rise in intrarectal pressure, which was associated with a concomitant rise in resting anal canal pressure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)469-475
Number of pages7
JournalDiseases of the Colon & Rectum
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1990


  • Anorectal manometry
  • Body position
  • Perfused probe
  • Transducer probe

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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