Constipation is a common presenting problem, but its treatment is often unsatisfactory. It is important for nurses to remember that constipation is a symptom and not a disease. Chronic constipation can have a gradual onset over a number of years, with many people ‘self-medicating’ with over-the-counter laxatives and herbal products, which then result in the need for daily laxatives. This article will consider best practice for the assessment, treatment, and prevention of constipation.
- Neurogenic bowel
- Dietary fibre