Catheterization as part of incontinence management often fills the concerned individuals with dread. The thought of a tube being inserted into them is not a welcome one and many are aware of the trauma such an insertion can cause to a bladder.
There is, however, an alternative option for male individuals requiring a catheter. The male external catheter, or, as it is often called, condom catheter, is worn like a condom and, with leaks being prevented by a self-adhesive lining, connect to a bag worn on the leg. They are available in a variety of materials, including latex and silicone.
While latex male external catheters are generally cheaper than others, they do have one major disadvantage, which has caused Healthcare experts to recommend the use of silicone devices, in particular for permanent users. This major disadvantage lies in the allergenic properties of latex.
Latex is known to have high incidences of serious allergic reactions, which can manifest themselves through constant itching, red spotty rashes and, in extreme cases, puffy red eyes and breathing difficulties. In addition, the rashes may ultimately cause infections. To put it in short, latex external catheters are prone to cause extreme discomfort to the wearer.
It has been shown that the more an individual is exposed to latex, the more likely an allergic reaction becomes, and the more likely this reaction is to be severe. For someone having to rely on constant use of male external catheters, this is an undeniable risk.
The silicone male external catheters may be slightly more expensive, but have an array of advantages not provided by the latex versions. First of all, there is the fact that silicon is one of the most non-allergenic substances known. This combined with the fact that they allow the skin to breathe more easily, aids significantly in preventing discomfort and infections.
As the silicon variations are also clear, users are able to inspect their skin and make sure all is well without having to repeatedly remove and re-apply their catheter. The odor free material is evenly and uniformly coated with adhesive, ensuring secure placement and allowing a sense of safe and comfortable assurance.
Being available in a range of sizes, silicone male external catheters are essentially universally applicable and are accepted as an alternative by a host of satisfied users. They are the most suitable option for both skin integrity and comfortable wear.