Rectal irrigation for patients with functional bowel disorders
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Rectal irrigation for patients with functional bowel disorders

Dawn McWilliams Lead nurse, anorectal physiology, St Peter’s Hospital, Chertsey, Surrey

Functional bowel disorders encompass a number of symptoms including abdominal, pelvic and/or anal pain, bloating, nausea, disturbed bowel function, faecal urgency or incontinence, straining to evacuate bowels, incomplete emptying and constipation. This article examines the causes and effects of functional bowel problems on patients’ quality of life. It provides an overview of the treatment options and clinical management of these conditions, focusing on biofeedback and rectal irrigation. The author reports results from a small scale audit at her hospital and concludes that rectal irrigation is a valuable treatment option for patients with functional bowel disorders.

Nursing Standard. 24, 26, 42-47. doi: 10.7748/ns2010.03.24.26.42.c7569

Correspondence

dawn.mcwilliams@asph.nhs.uk

Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

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