Best Practice in Caring for Patients with an Ostomy

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Best practice guidelines are evidence-based recommendations that assist practitioners with assessment and management of appropriate healthcare (Taylor, 2012). One area that utilizes best practice to ensure excellent patient outcomes is ostomy care. The patient may have an ostomy for a number of reasons. They can be either temporary or permanent and are for patients who have bowel or bladder cancer, inflammatory bowel or diverticular disease, trauma, or perforation of the bowel. For ostomy care, it is important to focus on the areas of pre-operative, post-operative and discharge care (Taylor, 2012). According to the Wound, Ostomy, and Continence Nurses Society, (WOCN), before focusing on the ostomy care, the nurse should establish a relationship with the patient and their family. A comprehensive assessment should be performed that focuses on all aspects of the patient’s wellness; physical, psychosocial, cultural and spiritual. The nurse informs the patient about dietary needs, bathing/showering, and returning to work (Cronin, 2005). In doing so, the nurse gains the patient’s trust and confidence helping ease them throughout the intervention process. The assessment allows the nurse to fully recognize the patient not as another client needing a procedure but as a person who is going to have questions, concerns, and needs (WOCN, 2010). Once the nurse and patient establish a rapport, and the patient is comfortable and willing to proceed with the intervention, preoperative care

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