The right fitting external catheter will feel like you are not wearing one
When one becomes incontinent and no longer can retain the urine that the body processes, it may be time to search out a catheter. The old method of using a catheter meant that it had to be inserted into the urinary canal that caused a plethora of problems such as infections, swelling and other problems for those who were obese especially. The reason they had such problems is that they could not see what they were doing, and thus often did not insert the catheter properly.
Thus the newer method of using an external catheter is a much more advanced method. The way these catheters work is that at least in a male it is positioned directly over the penis. Tremendous care has been taken to create the male external so that many are not even made of latex any more, as many men are highly allergic to latex.
Instead the modern male external catheter (MEC) is made of silicone in its place, which is a great improvement over latex. Improvements have also been made in that they no longer require the patient to use adhesive strips, with the fervent hope that they were placed properly so that there was no urine leakage.
In their place now we have an MEC which has been applied with modern self-adhesive inside the sheath . That means that the catheter will self-adhere all around, thus creating a much better seal than did the old adhesive strips that would wrap around the outside of the catheter.
In essence, an MEC is easy to use since it basically is just like putting on a condom. What this means for the patient is that the catheter is so much more comfortable, and allows for all manner of activities that were prohibited before. In addition, the new MEC is much less painful, and thus also does not create all the infections that indwelling catheters did.
Considering all the problems that surrounded using indwelling catheters, often requiring a family member to learn how to insert one, the new external catheter that fits on the tip of the penis is a very welcome improvement. As welcome as they are though, there are occasionally problems that crop up with the use of this kind of catheter.
First, some older men have what is referred to as a retracted penis. If this is the case, there are even newer forms of catheters worn externally that might alleviate that problem. This type of catheter is in the form of a pouch. It adheres to the area around the head of the penis so when retraction does occur it won’t come off as a condom catheter might. This type of catheter is called a “retracted penis pouch”.
Catheters come in different sizes, so that one can realize the ultimate in using one without leaks nor any other problems. If penile adherence is problematic, it is highly suggested that the patient utilize a skin barrier in order to protect the sensitive skin of the penis as there is a possibility of skin breakdown from repetitive use of a catheter worn externally.