Constipation is a common presenting problem within the community setting, but its treatment is often unsatisfactory. It is important for nurses to remember that constipation is a symptom and not a disease. For older adults, 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 in adults within the community.
- Neurogenic bowel
- Older people