A urinary catheter is used to drain the bladder. It is a hollow, moderately elastic tube that amasses urine from the bladder to a drainage bag. There are three types of urinary catheters:

  • Indwelling catheters
  • Condom catheters
  • Intermittent catheters

How Can a Catheter Cause Severe Problems?

Whether you are the one inserting or removing a catheter or you have decided to leave it to a professional, you need to be aware of what to watch out for if something goes wrong. You may develop symptoms of catheter-associated UTI. Additionally, errors that occur when inserting and removing a catheter can result in painful complications.

Common Catheter Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Catheter won’t go in

If the catheter cannot go in, do not force it. Remove the catheter and try again after one hour. But, if you feel pain because your bladder is full and you cannot empty it, visit the nearest emergency department for help.

There is no urine draining

This usually happens when the lubricating gel has blocked the drainage eye holes on the catheter. Many of the lubricating gels are water-based and should dissolve in urine; however, it may take some few minutes, which can make you uncomfortable if you have a full bladder. Coughing can help start the urine flow.

Additionally, make sure that the catheter is not inserted in the vagina by mistake. If it has, remove the catheter, and try again using a new catheter, never reuse a catheter that has been in the vagina.

Urine is leaking around the catheter

This is a sign that the urine is unable to drain through the catheter. Check for and eliminate any kinks in the catheter or the drainage bag tubing.

You are experiencing stomach cramps

This can be caused by bladder irritation or a result of pressure on the bladder due to constipation. These cramps are referred to as bladder spasm. Call your doctor immediately to get further advice.

Failure of the balloon to inflate after it’s inserted

If the catheter was inserted to the hub and you are experiencing pain with the balloon inflation, the urethra might be injured, there might be some functional issues, or strictures may be present. Never force the balloon inflation because it carries a high risk for worsening or causing more damage to the urethra.

Difficulty removing the catheter

Injuries can occur to the urethra when the catheter is not pulled out carefully. You can be unable to remove the catheter due to an infection. Make sure you go slow when removing the catheter, or call your doctor to remove it. Clean the area after removing the catheter to prevent infections from occurring.

When removing the catheter, inspect it and make sure that all the parts are present, if not, contact your doctor immediately.

Get The Right Urinary Catheters

For most people, having a urinary catheter inserted is a substantial part of living a comfortable life. Knowing some of the mistakes that can occur when removing the catheters and how to avoid them will go a long way in preventing any errors from occurring. Visit Medical Supply Depot to purchase the right urinary catheters today!

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