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Key resources to support effective management of bladder and bowel dysfunction

Key resources for practitioners

We have added some key resources, for continence and other healthcare professionals, in effective management of bladder and bowel dysfunction to this step.

  1. Excellence in Continence Care. NHS England. [Updated 26 July 2018, cited 3 October 2018]. Available from:

    This document gives practical guidance for commissioners, providers, health and social care staff to help ensure people receive excellent continence care consideration.

  2. Management of lower bowel dysfunction, including DRE and DRF: RCN guidance for nurses. 2019 [Cited 20 December 2019] Available from: Guidance on how nurses can positively help patients with bowel disorders and maps out the wide range of skills required for specific aspects of bowel care, while helping to facilitate best practice.

  3. International Continence Society (ICS). Since 1971 the International Continence Society (ICS) has led multi-disciplinary continence research and education on a worldwide scale through the ICS Annual Meeting and the Neurourology and Urodynamics Journal.

    With over 3,000 members ICS is a thriving society of urologists, uro-gynaecologists, physiotherapists,nurses, scientists and researchers with a focus on continence and pelvic floor disorders. Find out more from [Cited 10 October 2018].

  4. Association for Continence Advice (ACA). There are many free educational resources available from the ACA website including Top Tips on Bladder and Bowel Issues. [Cited 10 October 2018]. Available from:

  • Top Tips on Dignity and Toileting (available to download in PDF format). In the wake of the Frances Report (2013) and reflecting the increasing emphasis on dignity in healthcare the ACA have developed ‘top tips’ on dignity and toilet use for all practitioners as reminders of good practice and discussion points.

  • Top Tips on Management of Urinary Tract Infection in Adults in the Community (available to download in PDF format). Urinary tract infection (UTI) is the most prevalent infection globally. It has been defined as ‘The presence and multiplication of bacteria in one or more structures of the urinary tract with associated tissue invasion’.

  • Top Tips on Pelvic Floor (available to download in PDF format). Keeping the Pelvic Floor strong is important to prevent and improve both bladder and bowel incontinence Use it – don’t lose it: do your pelvic floor exercises every day.

  • Top Tips on Paediatric Continence (available to download in PDF format). Incontinence is a common problem for children and young people with an estimated 900 000 (Dept of Health, 2003) suffering. Being incontinent has a significant negative impact on quality of life for children, young people and their families.

  • “>Top Tips on Indwelling Catheters (available to download in PDF format). An indwelling urinary catheter used long term may be required when all other methods of bladder drainage have failed and may improve quality of life. HOWEVER indwelling catheterisation carries significant risk of Catheter Associated Urinary Tract Infection, which can lead to sepsis and death.

The ACA in conjuction with NHS Highland recently produced this video Your pelvic floor (available on NHS Highland’s YouTube channel).

This is an additional video, hosted on YouTube.

© Association for Continence Advice. CC BY-NC 4.0
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Understanding Continence Promotion: Effective Management of Bladder and Bowel Dysfunction in Adults

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