If you have a suprapubic catheter, there are various procedures that are important for you to understand. These include how to clean, remove, and replace the device. Understanding how to change a suprapubic catheter is important for those who will have one long-term. The first time that a device is replaced the procedure should be performed by an experienced physician or other appropriately trained healthcare professional, such as a physician’s assistant or nurse. After that, the patient or someone associated with them can often perform the procedure at home.
Preparing and Replacement
If you are going to have your catheter changed, you should understand that there may be discomfort after the procedure and that you’ll need to monitor the device to make sure it is functioning properly and attend to the wound area to ensure it remains free from infection.
The procedure involves the following steps:
- All equipment should be assembled prior to the procedure, including the new catheter, sterile medical gloves, medical tape, sterile solution, bandages, syringe, lubricant, etc.
- Document the patient’s past medical history, including prior surgeries, conditions, and diseases and any drug or other allergies.
- After proper and complete washing and drying of hands, prep and drape the stoma area using techniques designed to ensure the area is sterilized.
- To do so, use an antiseptic solution such as betadine or Hibiclens.
- Take a syringe and deflate the balloon in the catheter. Then remove the device.
- Immediately upon removal, the channel should be treated with 5 ml to 10 ml of water-soluble lubricant and the new suprapubic catheter inserted.
- Monitor for urine and once it returns gently push the catheter approximately two inches further into the channel to make sure it is actually in the bladder.
- Inflate the balloon using the appropriate amount of sterile saline solution and attached the drainage system.
- Secure the device either using a stitch or medical tape.
- Document the procedure.
Changing your suprapubic catheter is an important procedure as it helps to ensure that you are able to continue to void urine in a timely manner. If after returning home from the procedure, you find that your urine flow has slowed or stopped, contact your doctor immediately. Also, if you notice any signs of infection, such as swelling, pus, or heat around the insertion area or a developing fever, contact your healthcare professional.
In most instances, suprapubic catheters need to be changed approximately every six weeks. Once you or someone such as a relative or friend takes over the procedure, it’s essential that yoursuprapubic catheter change occurs in a sterile environment and that you use supplies and tools that are appropriate to the process. Always replace the old catheter with a new one as soon as possible. Leaving the channel open will allow it to close up within a few hours of removal, creating suprapubic catheter complications that may call for the expertise of a physician.