An integral disposable absorbent article such as a diaper having a liquid pervious topsheet, a liquid impervious backsheet, an absorbent core disposed between the topsheet and the backsheet, at least one elastically contractible gasketing cuff, and at least one barrier cuff. The barrier cuff has a proximal edge and a distal edge. The absorbent article is additionally provided with spacing means for spacing the distal edge away from the top surface of the topsheet. In addition, adhesive means secure the end portions of the barrier cuff closed. A channel is formed between the proximal and distal edges in at least the crotch region because the distal edge is spaced away from the topsheet top surface.
When the diaper embodiment of the present invention is applied to a wearer, the barrier cuff rides up along the inner thighs and the perineum of the wearer in the crotch region and along the buttocks in the back waist region. Leakage prevention is enhanced because body exudates which are not immediately absorbed by the absorbent core contact the barrier cuff and are contained and held within the channel so that they do not wick out of the diaper or flow out of the gaps between the diaper and the legs or waist of the wearer. Additionally, should such exudates flow beyond the barrier cuff, leakage is further enhanced by the gasketing cuff because it forms an additional liquid impervious barrier about the leg or waist of the wearer.