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Referral Criteria for Paediatric Continence Service

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The aim of the paediatric continence service, is to promote continence, by supporting children/young people and their families to improve their symptoms, utilising a holistic assessment to provide options on treatment and intervention and offering education on behavioural and lifestyle changes that can promote bladder and bowel health.

Nocturnal Enuresis

Children are generally expected to be dry by a developmental age of 5 years.

Nocturnal enuresis is a term used for children and young people 5-19 years with bedwetting. Guidance indicates treatment options should be made available for children from 5 years of age. (NICE 2010)

  • All children from 5-16 years with nocturnal enuresis should be considered for referral to the Paediatric Continence Service, with parent/carer/child/young person consent.
  • They should reside within the boundary area of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.
  • A pre-assessment pro- forma should be completed prior to referral.
  • Children with secondary enuresis should have recent systemic illness excluded as cause.

Constipation in childhood can manifest with a variety of symptoms ,most commonly these include, the infrequent passage of stool (less than 3 complete stools weekly),difficulty/pain when passing stool, passage of hard ,large stools or hard pellets (rabbit droppings), stool with-holding behaviours, abdominal discomfort and faecal incontinence.

Idiopathic constipation is described as constipation that cannot be explained by any anatomical or physiological abnormalities.

  • Referral will be accepted for children 6/12 -16 years, from a general paediatrician, or emergency department doctor, underlying pathology or ‘red flag’ symptoms  should have been excluded and a diagnosis of idiopathic constipation made, with parent/carer/ child/young person consent.
  • They should reside within the boundary area of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.
  • There should be no other diagnoses which impact on bowel function.
Editorial Information

Last reviewed: 16 September 2019

Next review: 31 October 2025

Author(s): Paediatric Continence Service