Enhancing Urogynecology at the Lois Hole Hospital for Women

Enhancing Urogynecology with an Endo-Anal Ultrasound

The Lois Hole Hospital for Women has long been considered one of Canada's foremost leaders in Urogynecology. In fact, the Canadian Society for Pelvic Medicine often consults the hospital for the very latest in research and treatment in this area.

Now, Urogynecologists at Lois Hole Hospital have identified a new vital piece of technology that will give hope and a better quality of life for the 1,000 patients who visit the hospital with a variety of pelvic floor disorders—an endo-anal ultrasound.


Using ultrasound for pelvic floor disorders is the way of the future.

When used as a point-of-care tool as part of the initial consultation, the patient and surgeon can have their diagnosis immediately. Many times in urogynecology, a static image of an ultrasound performed by a radiologist or ultrasound technician is not sufficient. If the surgeon who will operate on you is also the one who does the ultrasound, it informs a smoother operation. The surgeon will ask the patient to do certain manoeuvres and this allows for better visualization of the mesh in the pelvis and how it moves, along with other pelvic floor disorders, most notably anal sphincter injuries.

By having real-time visualization of the patient's mesh, a 3D ultrasound can help surgical pre-planning and save needing to go to the operating room for "exploration" and then a second surgery for the actual mesh removal.

Other benefits can be to diagnose anal sphincter deficiencies in the clinic, rule out various causes of pelvic pain, and augment surgical planning.


The endo-anal ultrasound can and will help women with three devastating but common problems:

  1. Accidental bowel leakage, which can occur after childbirth.
  2. Women who have mesh implants in the pelvis that are either not working or causing pain and problems.
  3. An exciting new development where ultrasound technology can be used for women with chronic pelvic pain secondary to endometriosis, helping with pain mapping and surgical planning.


As a mesh centre of excellence in Alberta with a renowned perineal clinic for postpartum women, our urogynecologists do not currently have an endo-anal ultrasound to better serve their patients.

Diagnosing the anatomical defect linked to functionality of fecal incontinence via ultrasound is now becoming standard practice internationally. Having an endo-anal ultrasound on-site would enhance outcomes for our patients, whether they are newly postpartum or suffering from fecal incontinence in their older age.

The Lois Hole Hospital is fortunate to already have a urogynecologist who has been trained in using the ultrasound for examining the anal sphincter as well as locating pelvic mesh. This training is not yet being utilized to serve our population currently due to a lack of an endo-anal ultrasound machine. With a machine, this urogynecologist can also teach residents and colleagues. Others can also pursue further training to offer this service to the women in our practice.

The endo-anal ultrasound is expected to cost $200,000 CAD, and so we are hoping we can lean on the community to help us fund the purchase of this crucial piece of equipment for our hospital.