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Shriners Children's provides specialized care for children with rectal prolapse.

The goal of our colorectal and gastrointestinal specialty care is to provide children with anal-rectal disorders advanced care and rehabilitation that frees them from social stigma and allows them to live and play like other children.

What is Rectal Prolapse?

The rectum is attached to the pelvis with ligaments and muscles. Rectal prolapse occurs when the lining of a child's rectum comes outside of the anus and hangs out of the body. Other bowel problems including chronic constipation, diarrhea or straining while going to the bathroom usually contribute to this condition. Underlying conditions such as Hirschsprung's disease can also lead to rectal prolapse.

What Are the Symptoms of Rectal Prolapse?

  • Part or all of the rectum's lining has come out of your child's anus
  • Leakage of stool from the anus
  • Feeling of fullness or of not being able to completely empty the bowels
  • Anal itching or irritation

How Do We Care for Children with Rectal Prolapse?

Shriners Children's can provide treatment to children with rectal prolapse, generally, starting with outpatient bowel management where specialists put together an individualized plan for care of your child's condition.

We can also investigate if prolapse was caused by another condition and then provide treatment for that condition as well. Surgical intervention is considered once all other options are explored, and is rarely needed for this condition.

We provide follow-up care to monitor your child’s health, prevent problems, manage symptoms and give your child the best quality of life.

Specific treatments and services may vary by location. Please contact a specific location for more information.

Understanding Your Child's Colorectal and Gastrointestinal (GI) Appointment(s)

On the first visit, parents and children typically come for a group or individual overview and educational presentation about bowel management. Our doctors and nurses explain the medicines, enemas and diets we use as treatment options. Each family will visit with a provider to make a plan for their child.

If referred to one of our locations for a more complex condition or surgery, you and your child will go directly to the one-on-one visit with one of our providers to build a customized plan of care.

Sometimes, when deemed appropriate, your child may have a bowel X-ray. This helps us with diagnoses and check whether your child’s plan is progressing as expected. A nurse will talk with you either in person or by phone to discuss your child’s results.

Our goal is for your child to empty their bowel daily with no accidents and to live with as few limitations as possible. Success depends on your child’s condition and following your plan closely.

How We Support Your Child’s Total Health and Well-Being

Families and patients say that Shriners Children’s feels like home to them, and it's no wonder to us. We know that a child's needs go beyond the physical. Our care teams support their social, emotional and developmental health with patient programs and activities.

A few examples include:

The doctors are authentic. Dr. Hirose has excellent bedside manner and is very patient. He’s also great with Jordyn. He treats her like she’s one of his own kids
Yoni, Sacramento
physician speaking with patient sitting on exam table

Bowel Management Just for Children

Trouble with bowel control (fecal incontinence) can lead to struggles at home, in school, in friendships, with emotions, behavior and mental health. Many children can be more active, social, happy and independent if they have a plan for bowel management that works for them. Our program is designed with YOU in mind.

Innovative Treatments

View All Related Treatments

Alternatives to Rectal Enemas

Our team provides individualized diets, laxatives and psychosocial therapy to provide relief for children with constipation.


Shriners Children's pediatric surgeons perform this surgery to correct anorectal malformations that cause painful bowel movements. It involves the reconstruction of the anus to stretch or enlarge the opening where stool drains.

Colonic Irrigation

This alleviates immobile stool in the colon, preventing bacterial overgrowth and colitis. Our team teaches parents to perform colonic irrigation effectively at home.

Colon Resection

Colon resections, also referred to as sigmoid resections or bowel resections, are performed by our pediatric surgeons. The procedure involves removing part of the bowel to treat and prevent diseases and conditions that affect the colon.

Gastrostomy Tube Placement

A gastrostomy tube (G-tube) is placed in the stomach as a feeding tube for children who cannot get enough nutrition by mouth. Shriners Children’s uses G-tubes for children with esophageal, stomach or intestinal problems.


An ileostomy helps waste and gas exit the body without passing through the colon or rectum. An Ileostomy is typically used when a disease is preventing the colon from working properly or the colon has to be removed.

Ostomy Creation and Closure

Ostomy procedures change the way a child's urine or stool exits their body because of problems with their digestive or urinary system. Ostomies can be temporary or permanent.

Rectal Botox

Rectal Botox injections relax the sphincter muscles slightly, making it easier for a child to pass stool. Shriners Children's considers this method before surgical options.

Next Steps

Request an Appointment

Families and caregivers seeking treatment should start by contacting us for an appointment.

Log in to the Patient Portal

Parents and guardians of existing patients can email, request records, schedule appointments and more.

Refer a Patient

Physicians and healthcare providers can request appointments, start transfers or contact us with questions.