Wednesday, May 29, 2024



To find out if the Catheter is draining well. Sometimes it is done to prevent urinary stones from forming, in which case solutions, such as acetic acid, Solution G, or Renacidin are used if prescribed


  • Sterile glass asepto syringe with rubber bulb (two ounces)
  • Cotton balls and alcohol or alcohol wipe
  • Paper towels
  • Clamp for catheter (with Renacidin only)
  • Sterile container to hold irrigation solution
  • Irrigation solution
  • Clean cap or alcohol wipe packet to cover end of drainage tube or Leg Bag if you will be connecting to the same system.


  • Bring equipment to the bedside in a pan
  • Wash hands well with soap and water or towelettes
  • Place paper towels under the catheter and tubing connection
  • Moisten cotton balls with alcohol and place on the paper towel
  • Remove container for irrigating solution from the pan – touch only the outside of the glass.
  • Pour about two ounces of solution into the container
  • Remove syringe and bulb (squirt water out of the bulb)
  • Assemble syringe and rubber bulb as shown in the following diagram. If you dip the bulb in the irrigation solution, it will fit easily into the syringe. After assembling the syringe, it can rest in the jar.


  • Place the pan to collect urine under the open end of the catheter connection
  • Wipe around the catheter and drainage tube connection with cotton ball wet with alcohol
  • Separate the catheter from the drainage tubing. Cover the end of the tubing and put to one side. Prop the catheter in the collection basin. Do not let open end of catheter touch basin
  • Draw up one-ounce of the irrigation solution. Hold the asepto syringe with the tip down, so that no air is put into the bladder. Do not put more than two ounces into bladder at one time
  • Put the tip of the asepto syringe into the end of the catheter. Then irrigate by squeezing bulb with slow, gentle constant pressure. Do not forcefully irrigate the catheter. If the solution won’t go in easily, change the catheter. Never use suction to drain solution from the bladder. It can cause damage to the lining of the bladder.
  • Pinching the end of the catheter, remove the syringe while continuing to squeeze the bulb. If you are irrigating with Renacidin, at this point:
    • If you obtain Renacidin from a pharmacy or supply house, check to see if it has been sterilized after mixing.
    • Instill a second ounce of Renacidin and clamp the catheter before allowing it to drain.
    • Leave the catheter clamped for 10 minutes and then drain. Don’t forget to unclamp your catheter. Set a timer if you’re forgetful
  • Let urine drain, by gravity, into the basin

  • Repeat with the remaining solution.

  • Cleanses connector with alcohol wipe or cotton ball and reconnect to the drainage tubing.

  • Wash irrigation equipment



  • You can change from one drainage system to the next quite easily if you irrigate:
    • Just before bedtime: Disconnect the leg bag from the catheter, irrigate, and reconnect to clean the night drainage system
    • Just before you get up: Disconnect the night drainage system and reconnect to a clean leg bag. Save time by boiling your syringe and the container for the solution the night before. Leave the lid on the pot until ready to do the irrigation.
  • If you irrigate in the evening and in the morning, boil two sets in the same pot at once.

  • It is more economical to make your own solution.


  • Do not use acetic irrigation solutions, i.e., Renacidin, Solu-G or acetic acid if blood is noted in urine.


PoinTIS Copyright © 1998 the Louis Calder Memorial Library of the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center, all rights reserved.

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