Catheters and the role they play
Catheters are an instrument designed for individuals who may have difficulties with the control of urine from their bladder. They are used in a way that is designed to help allow the discharge and control of urine from the bladder which may be caused by retention of urine, or in other words some type of difficulty which doesn’t allow an individual to empty their bladder when necessary. They are also used where an individual cannot control the emptying of the bladder, in this case there may be constant leakage which affects the life of the individual. These products are designed to make the life of the user easier when it comes to managing incontinence.
These are designed in a number of shapes, sizes and materials but are all designed for the same purpose which is the control of bladder emissions. These shapes are made to be used for different reasons. For instance some catheters are designed as indwelling units. This type of unit is usually inserted into the urethra which is part of the urinary tract that leads from the bladder to the urinary discharge point on the outer part of the body in the genital area. It has a tube and collection bag attached and remains in place for a period of time. This type of catheter is designed for many uses which may be for those people who are bedridden due to illness, injury or surgery. It is also designed for applications where an individual isn’t bedridden but requires an indwelling catheter due to complications with the emptying of their bladder.
Other shapes of catheters may help to allow an individual more freedom. These types are the intermittent and external varieties. The intermittent type has been designed to be used when needed and is removed after use. It is inserted into the urethra to allow the release of urine into a receptacle which may be a toilet or pan and is then removed afterwards, and disposed of.
Two external varieties are the condom and Liberty which also have a drainage tube and collection bag attached but allow the user a certain amount of freedom. The condom shape is worn in a similar way to a condom while being held in place by an adhesive lining. The drainage bag and tube is generally worn strapped to the leg under clothing, and emptied when required. The Liberty shape is worn attached to the glans penis by adhesive and works in a similar way to the former. Another external shape is one made especially for the female anatomy which fits over the female genitalia with the urine passing through a pre made opening into a pouch which is also emptied when necessary.
All may have their drawbacks and one of the major problems is keeping the levels of bacteria low or nonexistent. Infections and inflammation are often caused by a build up of bacteria, and maintaining a high level of cleanliness when using any catheter is important. Making sure the catheter is the correct fit will also add to cleanliness when using one.