Rising to the challenges faced by people living with dementia and a stoma
An ageing population in the UK is resulting in an increasing prevalence of dementia. There are about 850 000 people diagnosed with dementia in the UK, with numbers set to rise to over 1 million by 2025 (Prince et al, 2014). Many of those affected have multiple comorbidities that may include stoma formation resulting from bowel resection surgery.
Patients with stomas fall into two categories:
Each scenario brings challenges for the patient and their carers and families.
Symptoms associated with dementia, such as memory loss, communication difficulties, attention and concentration deficits, difficulty learning and retaining skills, can all add to the challenges faced by ostomates and nurses in stoma management.
Although some people with dementia can process information, many individuals who have a stoma will struggle to maintain independent care. The impact of dementia for an ostomate affects their quality of life. It also has an impact on their family and carers.
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