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Int J Nurs Stud. 2005 May;42(4):479-92.

The role of the nurse in community continence care: a systematic review.

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  • 1Department of Health Care Studies, Section of Nursing Science, Universiteit Maastricht, P.O. Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht, The Netherlands.


Urinary incontinence (UI) is a condition that is associated with decreased quality of life. Apart from this impact on quality of life, UI is also a very costly problem. It is recognised that 'usual care' for patients suffering from UI is not optimal. Specialised nurses can play an important role in the care for community-dwelling incontinent patients, as they have the appropriate interpersonal and technical skills to provide patient-tailored care. This systematic review analyses the effect of treatment by nurses on clinical and economic outcomes. A total of 12 randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were found, varying in terms of population, setting, outcome measurement and control/intervention. There is limited evidence that treatment by nurses results in a decrease in incontinence. No evidence was found for cost reduction. Recommendations are made for future studies.

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