Continence aids in the management of urinary incontinence

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Urinary incontinence is a common problem, more so in older people and those in residential or nursing homes. Guidelines promote a structure to the management of incontinence, recommending non-pharmacological measures (including continence aids) as first-line options. Anticholinergic medications are used widely for urge incontinence, and surgical measures employed in selective cases.

Whilst other treatments are being tried, or where incontinence is refractory to treatment (about 30% of cases), it is important to promote continence or contain incontinence with continence aids in order to minimize psychological complications. What can be a bewildering array of aids is available and choosing the right type of aid requires knowledge of these. Here, we suggest a classification of continence aids, describing individual characteristics and appropriate situations for use.

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