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Executive Summary: A Quick Reference Guide for Managing Fecal Incontinence (FI)

Willson, Margaret M.; Angyus, Melissa; Beals, Dawn; Callan, Laurie; Francis, Kathleen; Kingan, Michael J.; Porras, Opal Kathleen

Journal of Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nursing: January/February 2014 - Volume 41 - Issue 1 - p 61–69
doi: 10.1097/WON.0000000000000004

This article is an executive summary of A Quick Reference Guide for Managing Fecal Incontinence (FI), which was published September 2013 by the WOCN Society's Continence Committee. The quick reference guide provides an overview of fecal incontinence and how it is commonly managed. The information has been compiled so that nurses can quickly access a wide array of information in a single resource to facilitate patient care and patient/staff education. The topics include a definition of FI, epidemiologic data, psychosocial impact, costs, a brief description of bowel physiology, causes of FI, skin complications, assessment, management, patient education, and recommendations for future research. The complete quick reference guide also includes 5 appendices. The appendices provide additional information about predisposing factors for FI, assessment tools, medications and foods that affect gastric or colonic motility, and examples of FI management systems/collectors. The complete quick reference guide is available in the Members-Only library at the WOCN Society's Web site (, and it can also be purchased from the online bookstore at the Society's Web site. This article provides a synopsis of the key features contained in the complete quick reference guide.

Margaret M. Willson, MSN, RN, CWOCN, Manager, Clinical Education & Marketing, Hollister Incorporated, Libertyville, Illinois.

Melissa Angyus, MS, RN, APRN, CWCN-AP, COCN, Advanced Practice Nurse Wound/Ostomy, Community Hospital, Munster, Indiana.

Dawn Beals, MSN, APRN, CFCN, CWOCN, Nurse Practitioner, Kadlec Regional Medical Center, Richland, Washington.

Laurie Callan, MSN, ARNP, CWOCN, FNP, Family Practice Nurse Practitioner, Whiteside County Medical Clinic, Rock Falls, Illinois and Advanced Practice Nurse Wound Services, Mercy Medical Center, Clinton, Iowa.

Kathleen Francis, MSN, RN, CWOCN, FNP-BC, WOC Specialist, Maimonides Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York.

Michael J. Kingan, MSN, RN, CWOCN, Nursing Director, MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Washington, District of Columbia.

Opal Kathleen Porras, MSN, RN, CWON-AP, CCCN, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Advanced Practice Nurse Wound Ostomy Services, Community Hospital, Munster, Indiana.

Correspondence: Becky Dryden, Publications & Website Manager, WOCN Society, 15000 Commerce Parkway, Suite C, Mount Laurel, NJ 08054 (

Margaret Willson is Manager of Clinical Education for Hollister, Inc. The authors have no conflict of interest.

© 2014 by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society.