A new approach to providing continence care in an ageing population

incontinence1Adrian Wagg is a Professor of Healthy Ageing at the University of Alberta, a regular author for the BGS Age and Ageing journal and General Secretary of the International Continence Society.

He will present a guest lecture on continence at the BGS Spring Meeting in March 2015. 

Incontinence is a hugely debilitating condition which affects millions of men and women worldwide.  Its incidence is rising as the proportion of people surviving into late life increases and with increasing rates of long-term conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and dementia for which it is a symptom or complication.  It has a huge impact on the lives of our patients and their caregivers, and comes at significant cost to health and social care services.  However, it remains one of the least discussed and most poorly understood conditions.

Earlier this year, along with colleagues Diane Newman, Kai Leichsenring and Paul van Houten, I undertook a review of the way continence service are organised, which was funded and supported by leading global hygiene company, SCA.

We concluded that there is a need for a greater focus on incontinence as a health and social care issue and to ensure that adequate resources are devoted to it.  In the UK, patients are still not being seen by the right professional at the right time.  The NHS needs to develop better models of multi-disciplinary working to ensure care is person-centred, and prioritises quality of life. Continue reading

Incontinence: nature’s call to arms

William Gibson is a Clinical Research Fellow at the University of Alberta. His clinical review New Horizons in Urinary Incontinence in Older People was recently published in Age and Ageing journal. He tweets at @drbillgibson incontinence1

Urinary incontinence, the condition in which people wet themselves by accident, is a common problem for older people. Around half of older people have “bladder trouble” such as needing to rush or get up lots of times overnight to pee, and up to one in six  will have accidents.

Despite this, many people view these bladder problems as a normal part of ageing (they aren’t), or as something that can’t be treated (they can). Continue reading