Differences between internal and external catheters

Catheterization is a medical procedure that allows individuals to manage urinary incontinence or retention. Two primary types of catheters are commonly used: internal catheters (also known as indwelling or Foley catheters) and external catheters (sometimes referred to as condom catheters or urinary sheaths). We’ll delve into the key differences between these two types of catheters, helping you make informed choices for your specific needs:

Internal Catheters:

  • Internal catheters are inserted directly into the bladder through the urethra.
  • They are typically used by individuals who cannot empty their bladders naturally due to various medical conditions, surgeries, or injuries.
  • Internal catheters are available in various materials, such as silicone, latex, or hydrophilic coating, to suit individual preferences.
  • They require sterile insertion and are usually left in place for a set period, ranging from days to weeks.

External Catheters:

  • External catheters, on the other hand, are worn externally, similar to a condom, and are secured to the shaft of the penis.
  • They are often chosen by individuals who have partial or total bladder control and want an alternative to absorbent products.
  • External catheters come in various designs and sizes to accommodate different needs.
  • They are typically worn for shorter periods, such as during the day, and should be changed regularly.

Key Differences:

  • Insertion
  • Duration of Use
  • User Profile
  • Materials

The choice between internal and external catheters depends on your specific medical condition, lifestyle, and preferences. Send us an email or chat with us to determine the most suitable option for your unique situation.

Always follow proper hygiene and care practices when using either type of catheter to minimize the risk of complications. With the right choice and correct usage, catheters can significantly improve the quality of life for those dealing with urinary issues.

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