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New insights on incontinence-associated dermatitis

David Voegeli explores the current thinking on IAD and the implications for nursing practice

Prolonged contact of the skin with urine or faeces leads to a specific form of moisture-associated skin damage, known as incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD). While this is a common condition encountered in all areas of nursing practice, gaps remain in our understanding of the many contributing factors.

A lack of standardised definitions of IAD, differences in terminology, and a bewildering increase in products available to prevent and manage IAD, make it difficult for nurses to deliver evidence-based care. However, it is an area where nursing research has made a considerable contribution over the past few years, culminating in the development and publication of a set of international best practice principles based on expert consensus.1 This article explores the main principles developed and the implications for nursing practice.

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