Anders F. Mellgren, MD,PhD,FACS
Anders F. Mellgren, MD,PhD,FACSTuri Josefsen Endowed
Chair in Surgery
Professor and Chief
Division of Colorectal Surgery

The University of Illinois Health Bowel Function and Incontinence Center (UIH-BFIC) provides diagnosis consultation and innovative care options for patients with fecal incontinence, chronic constipation, pelvic organ prolapse, and/ or rectal cancer. These health issues affect a broad range of patients and can have a significant effect on quality of life.


The Bowel Function & Incontinence Center at University of Illinois Hospital provides the latest surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for our patients.

Non-surgical options may include; dietary counseling, medical management and biofeedback therapy.  Surgical options performed include reconstructive pelvic surgeries, including surgical sphincter repair, surgery for rectal prolapse and pelvic organ prolapse, etc. Tumor patients are treated with the latest minimally invasive techniques, including laparoscopic and/ or robotic options.

The University of Illinois Health Bowel Function and Incontinence Center also offers novel treatment options for fecal incontinence, constipation, and rectal cancer. With our significant experience in these treatment alternatives; our specialists frequently teach these techniques to other physicians at national and international meetings.

Novel treatment options include:

Sacral Nerve Stimulation

This therapy targets the communication problem between the brain and the nerves that control bowel function. The treatment includes implantation of a flexible lead near the tailbone and a stimulator sends mild electrical impulses through the wire to pelvic nerves. This treatment has a high success rate in reducing symptoms of fecal incontinence.

Injection Therapy for Fecal Incontinence

Injection of Solesta can reduce fecal incontinence symptoms and provide long-Lasting results. This procedure requires no anesthesia and is performed in our clinic.

Robotic Ventral Rectopexy

This treatment modality offers a minimally invasive alternative in the treatment of patients with internal or external rectal prolapse.  Ventral rectopexy can offer improved postoperative functional results and the procedure is performed through a few small incisions.


The Bowel Function & Incontinence Center at University of Illinois Hospital provides advanced assessment using the latest diagnostic techniques, including:

Anorectal Manometry

Measures the strength of the anal sphincters, sensation and can rule out disease and other pelvic floor problems.


Studies the nerve function in the pelvic floor and patients’ ability to voluntarily contract and relax the pelvic floor muscles.

Rectal Ultrasound

Specialized ultrasound of the anal sphincters and the wall layers of the rectum. Used for assessment of a number of rectal conditions, including rectal cancer, fecal incontinence, fistulas, abscesses, pelvic organ prolapse, and pain. Imaging is improved by advanced 3-D ultrasound technology.

Cine Defecography

Evaluates rectal emptying and relaxation of the pelvic floor. Visualizes functional problems and different types of pelvic organ prolapse.  Results are interpreted and the provider will review the results and recommendations and discuss treatment options.