Intermittent catheterization programs are usually used when someone is having surgery performed. This procedure is needed in order to capture urine while undergoing surgery and during post-surgical recovery.
When hospitalized for surgical as well as non-surgical reasons, approximately 15%-to-25% of these patients will require intermittent catheterization programs. Foley catheters, which are placed internally, assist patients with passing urine. Furthermore, they assist hospital staff with measuring urine output.
Catheters are also used to dispense medication for Individuals experiencing painful bladder syndrome and interstitial cystitis. In addition to or in lieu of taking oral medication, using intermittent catheters to administer medication directly into the bladder may be recommended and improve an individual’s quality of life.
There are other medical conditions that may necessitate using catheters. Men over 60, for example, may begin to experience issues with benign prostatic hyperplasia. Some, but not all, men may have issues with blockage as a result. When blockage does occur, using a male external catheter kit may be recommended to assist with releasing urine.
Urinary catheters may also be recommended for Individuals that experience incontinence. This issue tends to increase with age. For individuals that are 65-to-69 years old, 14% may experience urinary incontinence. For those individuals 85 or older, 45% may experience incontinence.
A urinary catheter may also be used on a regular basis with individuals that have kidney disease. If kidney function is less than 10%-to-15%, however, they may need either dialysis or a kidney transplant.
When using urological supplies at home, it’s important to take care of them properly to avoid urinary tract infections. Catheter-associated urinary tract infections commonly occur in hospitals, and account for over 30% of healthcare-associated infections. Surveys have shown that nearly all of these infections occur as a result of catheter installation.
During the day, it’s important to empty the leg bag at least twice. It may also be emptied when it is half-full. In order to properly care for leg bags, there are recommended guidelines. When replacing the leg bag with the drainage bag before going to sleep, it’s important to follow these directions:
- Rinse the leg bag with one-part vinegar and three-parts water.
- Soak it for 20 minutes.
- Rinse with warm water.
- Hang the bag up to dry.
While leg bags should usually be replaced once a week, doctors may indicate that twice a month is sufficient. It’s important to follow these and other doctors’ guidelines to avoid infections and other potential issues.