A bowel history includes the following:
- A description of usual pattern of bowel movements (frequency, characteristics of stool, usual time for defecation).
- Measures taken to have a bowel movement, inclusive of laxatives (type, amount used), and effectiveness of measures taken.
- Client beliefs about bowel movements.
- History of the problem of constipation (onset and pattern).
- The ability to sense the urge to defecate.
For persons with cognitive impairment, information regarding the client’s behavioural manifestations of the need to have a bowel movement should be obtained from the client’s primary care provider.
Prevention of Constipation in the Older Adult Population
Point of Care Resources