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Pudendal Nerve Studies

Pudendal nerve studies evaluate the nerve to the anal sphincter muscles. A nurse or doctor does a rectal exam with a small electrode taped to the index finger. The nerve inside the rectum is stimulated with a low electrical current. Some people do not feel the stimulus. Others feel a slight "buzz." The nerve stimulus should cause the sphincter muscles to contract. A computer measures how long it takes the sphincter to contract after the nerve is stimulated.

If the pudendal nerve is slow, it is less likely that surgical repair of a weak sphincter will be successful.