Indwelling Versus External Catheters

Indwelling Versus External Catheters
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More so than any other type of catheter, a Foley cath has revolutionized urinary incontinence care for those suffering from this problem long-term. Shorter term treatments can still benefit from any one of the top external catheters: condom catheters, Hollister catheters or a Texas catheter. These simple devices, whether indwelling or externally used, have made life easier for thousands of patients, but there are some pros and cons of each of them.

The Foley catheter is easily one of the most (if not the most) common styles of indwelling catheter. Simple in construction, this long tube has at least two lumens. One lumen is to allow urine to drain from the bladder and the other is used for pumping sterile water into a special balloon that is secured to the end inserted into the bladder.

This balloon, once filled with water, will hold the catheter in place in the bladder. There are Foley catheters with three or more lumens, too. These extra opening can be used to pump medicine directly into the patient's bladder.

Much easier to use is the male external catheter. These devices work for either short or long-term incontinence issues, but are especially popular among male patients that are only suffering incontinence temporarily.

This type of catheter is rolled onto the penis or placed around it like a sheath and held firmly in place with a special adhesive or clamping device. Urine is collected at the tip and guided into a hose and finally into a collection bag. This style of catheter allows for full mobility and is quite comfortable, too.

Health issues and patient satisfaction are always a concern. It is common knowledge that indwelling catheters are more likely to cause a urinary tract infection. The external catheter is easier to remove for daily cleaning and gives bacteria a less hospitable home. Both styles remain popular at health care facilities around the world and each has circumstances where it is the best choice.

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