Ask the care expert ... about fecal containment systems

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Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA
Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA

Are you aware of any type of fecal containment system that may assist us with very loose stools that keep contaminating sacral ulcers?

Yes, there is one fairly new product that comes to mind. Flexi-Seal® FMS is a temporary containment device, indicated for bedridden or immobilized, incontinent patients/residents with liquid or semi-liquid stool. It is designed to safely and effectively contain and divert fecal matter, protect patients' wounds from fecal contamination and reduce both the risk of skin breakdown and spread of infection.

A soft, flexible retention balloon conforms to sphincter anatomy to create an effective seal to minimize leakage, and is designed to minimize the chance of tissue necrosis.

Just a reminder: You should check to see if you need a physician order for this, with the frequency of change listed. Also, ask your director of nursing if this is something you can order for the patient/resident. Some facilities have formularies and may only order the supplies on the formulary, so be sure to check this out. 

You certainly don't want to learn all about the product only to find you are unable to order it. 

For clarity, I do not work or consult for the company that offers this potential solution. I am simply providing one of the only answers I know to effectively contain the loose stools that may be contaminating the pressure ulcer. Please write with any others.

Also, just because you may be adding this product, it does not mean that care of the pressure ulcer, regularly removing stool from the skin, and routine skin care and incontinence management should be forgotten. In fact, you may want to increase the frequency of checks. The skin care provided by a nurse cannot be replicated or entirely replaced by a device.