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Management of Fecal Incontinence in Frail Older Adults Living in the Community

  • Kathleen F. Hunter
  • Melissa Northwood
  • Veronica Haggar
  • Frankie Bates
Chapter

Abstract

Most older adults live in the community either alone or in a family arrangement. Community-living older adults are diverse, and the health status of some is characterized by complexity related to having multiple morbidities and possibly frailty. Assessment and management of fecal incontinence in frail community-dwelling older adults with health-related complexity may be enhanced using a complexity framework that accounts for social, environmental, and political contextual factors as well as health/medical concerns. This chapter will explain common problems that contribute to fecal incontinence in these older adults such as impaction with overflow, constipation, diarrhea, and mild to moderate cognitive impairment. It will address special considerations that the advanced practice nurse must take into account including hearing and vision impairment, physical limitations, the physical environment and toilet access in the home, diet and hydration, and the role of the caregiver. The chapter will then discuss appropriate management interventions. Interventions highlight the importance of a holistic approach, client and caregiver engagement and education, and referral to other healthcare professionals and community services.

Keywords

Fecal incontinence Frailty Older adult Community-living Health complexity 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen F. Hunter
    • 1
    • 2
  • Melissa Northwood
    • 3
    • 4
  • Veronica Haggar
    • 5
  • Frankie Bates
    • 6
  1. 1.Faculty of NursingUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada
  2. 2.Glenrose Hospital Continence ClinicEdmontonCanada
  3. 3.Saint Elizabeth Health CareHamiltonCanada
  4. 4.Aging, Community and Health Research Unit, School of NursingMcMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada
  5. 5.Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation TrustLondonUK
  6. 6.Urology Wellness ClinicSt. Joseph’s HospitalSaint JohnCanada

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