- Foley catheters are available in multiple different sizes and types, and selection of which version to use is based on the patients preference and doctors recommendation;
- Relatively inexpensive;
- Low risk of transferring contaminants and human by-products for the closed bags, since they are discarded after their 3 month usage period;
- Clogged catherters are easily flushed and cleansed, and can be used again;
- Bag can be strapped to the leg for inconspicuousness and convenience when moving;
- A pediatric version is available for children who’s small, fragile bodys are not fit to use the standard catheters;
- Balloon that is fitted to the 2 and 3-way catheters prevent it from dropping out of the bladder.
Before Foley catheters can be used, it is important to select the right catheter for the patient. A patient who is prone to UTI may require the 3-way foley catheters to irrigate the bladder and clear it of debris which could be a precursor to UTI development. If a child is seeking to use a foley catheter, the 2-way pediatric variant should be used due to its smaller, safer size.
Before inserting anything into the body, hands should be thoroughly washed to avoid any transmission of infectious or contaminated material. The patient should be on their back with legs spread and feet together – this position relaxes the bladder. The patients’ genital area is treated with disinfectant and any debris is removed. Surgical drapes are laid over the patient, leaving only the head and genitalia exposed, to prevent contamination of other areas of the body. The medical professional inserts a flexible tube into the urethra which eventually makes its way into the bladder. The urine is then drained out of the bladder, through the tube and into a collection bag, either located on a stand next to the patient or strapped to the inside of the leg, the latter being more suited to when the patient is mobile.
It is imperative that the foley catheters are not used if the packaging or seal is compromised. Evidence of this may suggest tampering or contamination. If one should come across catheters inside comprised packaging, the correct course of action is to dispose of it quickly and safely.
- It is of utmost importance that foley catheters that have not been properly flushed and cleansed are not reused. Once used, the device is not fit to be salvaged for further used unless it is properly cleaned out. Reusing uncleaned catheters increases the risk of contracting a urinary tract infection or related conditions;
- Must prepare the catheter for use in a clean, sterile environment, absent of bodily fluids or other sources of contamination;
- It is best to leave the catheter insertion process to a medical professional to avoid injury;
- If a child requires the use of a foley catheter, the pediatric 2-way catheter should be opted for;
- Balloon must be swollen with sterilized water;
- Promptly and safely dispose of any foley catheters that have touched a potentially contaminated surface;
- Correct catheter must be selected according to the wearers preference – individuals who prefer to have the added benefit of bladder irrigation should select the 3-way catheter;
- Clogged catheters must be flushed out thoroughly to be re-used or simply replaced with a new catheter;
- It is vital that the foley catheter, regardless of type, is changed at least every 3 months. catheters suspected of being faulty must be changed immediately. Failure to do so will likely result in a urinary tract infection.
Foley catheters are manufactured using a variety of materials. The materials used in the range offered by AdvaCare are high quality silicone-coated latex, made with a medical grade PVC contruction.