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Continence care following stroke is inadequate

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Nurses working in stroke rehabilitation do not view promotion of urinary continence as a priority.

This is the conclusion of a qualitative study that explored the nursing management of incontinence in the UK, Sweden and China.

Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with ten registered nurses from at least four different stroke units in these countries.

The researchers found that superficial continence assessment did not help to identify the cause of urinary incontinence or result in an individual plan of care. Patients frequently received care that focused on containment of their incontinence rather than interventions aimed at improving bladder function.

The authors identified that patients need an assessment bladder function that identifies the cause of incontinence and a plan of care that includes strategies to promote continence.

Journal of Clinical Nursing (2009); 18:7, 1049 - 1058

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Readers' comments (1)

  • So what's new? Continence doesn't seem to be a priority yet it affects so many and can be a good indicator to prognosis. The Sentinel Report said as much years ago. Many Trust's Stroke Services and Continence Services worked together to develop better care but I wonder how many were allowed to continue and develop. As the authors suggest, bladder and bowel assessment including continence strategies should be just part of a basic care component. let's hope we are not seeing Trusts returning to pad management, 'throwing a pad at the problem' as we were criticised for doing in the 80's & 90's.

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