SOURCE: Lynn Stephens, R.N.

Lynn Stephens, R.N.

April 05, 2010 15:13 ET

New Product Restores Dignity to Caregivers and Patients

Nurse-Designed Mattress Helps Elderly Who Suffer Incontinence

DOTHAN, AL--(Marketwire - April 5, 2010) -  Ask any family caregiver and they'll tell you that dignity in someone's final days is priceless. Lynn Stephens, a nurse and former family caregiver, also wants to make sure that dignity, while priceless, doesn't cost a lot.

The burden for family caregivers is great, and despite the best of intentions, can create stress and turmoil for people who render in-home care for elderly members of their families. Stephens, who was inspired to become a registered nurse after her experience caring for her father, knows that many caregivers and patients alike feel that the most stressful element of care giving can be when incontinence sets in.

"It's the one thing I've learned as both a caregiver and a nurse that families fear the most," she said. "Caring for an incontinent parent or relative is the most humiliating part of the job for both caregiver and patient. That's why my husband and I set out to develop a solution that addressed the patient's medical needs while also addressing the family's desire for dignity in their loved one's final days."

Their creation, the incontinence mattress (www.thecaregiversolution.com), consists of the following components:

  • A pressure reducing mattress with a cavity specially designed for Capstone by Tempur-Pedic Medical.
  • A specially designed disposable absorbent pad with an attached plastic bag.

The application of the mattress involves placing the disposable absorbent pad with the attached plastic bag onto the mattress and extending the plastic bag through the mattress cavity. The mattress can be placed onto virtually any hospital bed.

Changing the pad/bag is a simple procedure which can be accomplished in less than 60 seconds, and generally with only one caregiver, Stephens added.

According to Stephens, the patient lies comfortably on the Tempur-Pedic Medical mattress while the patient's waste products are collected in the bottom of the plastic bag. She added that testing has shown the mattress is essentially 100 percent effective in separating the skin of immobilized or mobile and cognizant incontinent patients from their solid waste, and 90 to 100 percent effective in accomplishing the same for their fluids.

About Lynn Stephens

Lynn Stephens is a Registered Nurse, RN, with eight years of hospital experience, during which she has cared for many elderly patients.

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