What Is the Process for Urinary Catheterization?


Quick Answer

During urinary catheterization, either an indwelling catheter or an intermittent catheter is placed in the urinary bladder to facilitate urine passage, according to Drugs.com. The process is applicable for people with conditions such as incontinence, bladder muscles problems and urine flow obstruction. Though useful, it is a risky procedure because it predisposes people to bladder damage, urethral wall injury, urinary tract infections and complications such as kidney inflammation, kidney and bladder stones, and prostate infection.

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Full Answer

To insert an indwelling catheter, the patient first removes his clothing and lies with his back down, explains Drugs.com. The doctor asks the patient to bend his knees and draw his legs apart before disinfecting the urethral opening. The physician lubricates the urethra and inserts the catheter into the bladder through the urethra. He secures the catheter in the bladder by inflating the catheter's balloon. Attaching a drainage bag to the catheter completes the process.

Inserting an intermittent catheter can be done either by a doctor or by the patient himself, notes Drugs.com. The insertion involves cleaning the hands, catheter and the urethral opening; lubricating the catheter; running the catheter through the urethra into the urinary bladder; and allowing the bladder to empty. Removing the catheter once the bladder is free of urine and cleaning the catheter as needed complete the process.

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