What Is the Purpose of a Suprapubic Catheter?


Quick Answer

A suprapubic catheter drains urine from the bladder. Medical caregivers cut a small incision just above the pubic bone to insert the catheter into the bladder of individuals with nerve or urethra damage that prevents the insertion of the catheter into the urethra, according to WebMD.

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Full Answer

The suprapubic catheter is a thin tube that connects the bladder to a urine collection bag that the patient normally attaches to the leg, according to WebMD. The incision cut into the belly is a stoma, states Drugs. com. The stoma requires special care and bandaging to prevent infection and pain. The caregiver normally provides instructions in the care for the stoma and catheter before the patient leaves the hospital.

Suprapubic catheters often remain in place for an extended time. The catheter requires changing every four to six weeks, according to MedlinePlus. Patients often learn to change the catheter themselves. Changes should occur in a sterile environment.

The suprapubic catheter should remain a closed system in order to protect the normally sterile environment of the urinary system, according to Drugs.com. Infections related to urinary catheters are common and often lead to serious side effects or even death. Infections occur with the introduction of bacteria into the catheter or drainage bag. Increasing fluid consumption after changing the catheter along with good hand-washing techniques are essential in preventing infections.

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