INTERMITTENT CATHETERIZATION PROGRAM (ICP)

Published: June 3, 2006
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If you do start urinating, Intermittent Catheterization is done to release the remaining urine from the bladder and measure the amount of urine left in the bladder after you urinated. Ideally, there should be no urine left in the bladder when the Catheter is removed. However, most people have some Residual Urine. The amount of residual urine will be measured routinely until the amount is as low as possible. Your doctor will tell you what is safe. Residuals are checked periodically as long as you are in the hospital and also after you go home.

At the start of Rehabilitation, intermittent catheterization is routinely done on all patients every 4 to 6 hours. As you improve and your bladder empties better, intermittent catheterization for residual urine will change from every 4 to 6 hours, to every 8 to 12 hours. One of the goals of the intermittent catheterization program is to promote sterile urine, i.e. urine that has no evidence of bacterial growth. For this reason, a no-touch, sterile, or “clean” technique is used.

PROCEDURE FOR INTERMITTENT CATHETERIZATION – CLEAN TECHNIQUE -FEMALE

1. Gather the necessary equipment:

  • Towelettes (or a soapy washcloth)
  • Wet wash cloth for rinsing, and a Towel
  • Cotton balls, antiseptic, and forceps
  • Container for collecting the urine
  • Water-soluble lubricant
  • Catheter (# 14 French; 5 inches long)
  • Mirror (unless a helper is catheterizing), Lamp or flashlight

2. Urinate first if you are doing an intermittent catheterization to measure residual urine

3. Wash your hands

4. Position legs and mirror so you can see the urinary opening. Hints:

  • Make sure lighting is good.
  • You will probably need to be propped up so that you are in a semi-sitting position.
  • If someone else is doing the procedure, you can lie flat.
  • A spreader bar with mirror attached can help.
  • Tennis shoes may help prevent you from slipping.

5. Open catheter tray

  • Touch only the outside of the wrapper when opening the outer paper.
  • Start so that the first flap is opened away from you; the inside of the covering is sterile.
  • Save the plastic wrapper to throw the used equipment in.

6. Sterile drape

  • Pick up the sterile drape by the corners and open it
  • The side you’ve touched should be next to the bed.
  • Place the sterile drape under the buttocks

7. Put on the Sterile Gloves

  • Touch only the inside of the gloves with your hand
  • Touch the outside of the glove only with another sterile glove
  • Anything that touches the catheter must be sterile.

8. Open package of antiseptic and pour it over all the cotton balls

9. Open package of lubricant

  • Lubricate catheter to about six inches from the end
  • Put lubricated catheter back in tray
  • Be sure all equipment is set up before cleansing

10. Open labia (see diagram above)

  • Use your left hand to open the labia; if you are left-handed, use your right hand.
  • Keep labia apart until the catheter is in place.

11. Cleanse the urethral opening (see diagram above)

  • With one hand, use forceps to pick up one cotton ball and clean one side of the urethral opening.
  • With a second ball, clean the other side of the urethral opening.
  • With two new cotton balls, clean over the urethral opening.
  • Use each cotton ball for only one stroke from front to back. Never re-use.
  • Drop used cotton balls on white paper surrounding the tray.

12. Insert the sterile catheter

  • Still holding the labia apart, pick up the catheter with your “sterile” hand, about 4 inches from the tip.
  • Gently insert the catheter into the urethral opening until the urine flows, directing it upward and forward. Don’t let fingertips of gloves touch labia or any part of the area around the rectum and urethral opening.
  • Insert one inch further.

Problems:

If you have difficulty finding the urinary opening, mark the vaginal opening by leaving the last cotton ball, or a tampon, in the vaginal opening.

If you should insert the catheter into the vagina by mistake, use a new catheter kit.

If you should have a spasm while catheterizing, stop and wait until the spasm has passed and then continue.

If you meet continued resistance, stop and call your doctor. Do not force the catheter in.

13. Hold end of catheter in the tray and wait for urine to drain. If the bladder seems empty, but you aren’t sure if the catheter tip is all the way in, apply pressure on the abdomen over your bladder with the palm of your hand, or, cough. A small amount of residual urine will be expelled if the catheter is in the right place.

14. Gently withdraw the catheter when the urine stops draining. Do not drain more than 500 cc of urine at one time. If there is more than 500 cc, clamp the catheter for 5-10m minutes before draining another 500 cc or the remainder.

15. Measure the amount of urine and record the amount urinated and the residual amount if you are keeping an accurate record.

16. Examine the urine and contact your nurse or doctor, IF you see:

  • Any change in the color or odor of the urine
  • Cloudiness in the urine
  • Bleeding or sediment in the urine

17. Discard all used supplies

18. Wash your hands

19. Drink cranberry or prune juice to promote acidic urine and reduce the risk of urinary tract infections.

PROCEDURE FOR INTERMITTENT CATHETERIZATION – CLEAN TECHNIQURE – MALE

1. Gather the necessary equipment

  • Special Intermittent Catheterization Pack
  • Basin of water
  • Soap
  • Three (3) disposable paper wash cloths
  • Linen saver (chux)

2. Wash penis and scrotum with soap and water, rinse, and dry.

3. Open catheterization pack

  • Touch only the outside of the wrapper when opening the outside package.
  • Start so that the first flap is opened away from you; the inside of the covering is sterile.
  • Save the plastic wrapper to throw the used equipment in.

4. Put on the Sterile Gloves

  • Touch only the inside of the gloves with your hand.
  • Touch the outside of the gloves only with another sterile glove.
  • Anything that touches the catheter must be sterile.

5. Sterile drape

  • Pick up the sterile drape by the corners.
  • Open the sterile drape, making sure it does not touch your body or the bed.
  • Place the sterile drape over the genital area, with the hole in the center of the drape over the head of the penis.

6. Pour cleansing solution over the cotton balls in the tray.

7. Open package of lubricant that is in the tray and squeeze lubricant over entire length of the catheter.

8. Pick up penis with your left hand, using the drape between your hand and the penis.

  • Hold penis erect.
  • With right hand, use a pair of forceps to pick up the saturated cotton balls.
  • Cleanse penis by wiping from front to back over the urethral opening and then around the head of the penis. If uncircumcised, pull back foreskin and clean entire head of penis.
  • Discard cotton balls, away from the sterile field.

9. Repeat Step 9 until all cotton balls are used.

10. Discard first pair of forceps, away from the sterile area.

11. Insert the sterile catheter

  • Pick up the catheter with the second pair of forceps.
  • Insert catheter into the urethra by sliding the catheter along the upper edge of the urethra.
  • Do not touch the penis with the forceps.

Problems:

If the catheter meets resistance, pause for one or two minutes at the point where resistance is felt, and then apply gentle pressure with the catheter. This will usually fatigue the sphincter muscle causing the muscle to relax and allowing the catheter to pass.

If you are unable to pass the catheter, do not force it. Stop the procedure and notify your physician.

12. Drain the urine

  • When the catheter is in, drain urine into the sterile tray.
  • Allow urine to drain until you are sure the bladder is empty.

13. Gently remove the catheter when the urine stops draining and place it in the tray.

14. Measure the amount of urine and record the amount if you are keeping an accurate record.

15. Examine the urine and contact your nurse or doctor, IF you see:

  • Any change in the color or odor of the urine
  • Cloudiness in the urine
  • Bleeding or sediment in the urine

16. Dispose of urine and all equipment.

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