Using an intermittent catheter comes with its own set of challenges, and some are tough to talk about. As your pharmacy partner specializing in intermittent catheters and supplies, we’re committed to keeping you safe, informed, and healthy as you begin the journey to better bladder health. That’s why we’re exploring an important topic for anyone using or considering an intermittent catheter: Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections (CAUTI). With the right tips and tools at your fingertips, you can reduce your risk and use our quality catheters for safe and comfortable relief.

What is a CAUTI?

CAUTI is an infection that can occur in the urinary tract when a catheter is used. While catheters are a safe and essential medical tool for many people, using them frequently can sometimes increase your risk of bacterial infection. Like other UTIs, the symptoms of a CAUTI include:

  • Cloudy, bloody, or strong-smelling urine
  • Pain or pressure in the pelvic area
  • Fever and chills
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Urine leakage around the catheter

These can be uncomfortable, but the good news is they are preventable with the right products and proper use.

What Causes a CAUTI?

CAUTIs usually develop when bacteria is introduced into the urinary tract while inserting, using, or maintaining a urinary catheter. This can happen in a number of ways, such as through unsterilized equipment or improper hygiene. This is not necessarily a reflection of your personal hygiene; rather, it’s about the techniques and tools used during self-catheterization.

How to Prevent a CAUTI

Preventing a CAUTI is all about keeping things sterile and using the right technique. By following some key tips, you can reduce your risk and feel confident when using your intermittent catheter:

  • Keep your hands clean. Always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling an intermittent catheter.
  • Disinfect the area. Once your hands are clean, use a new antiseptic wipe to disinfect your urethral opening to avoid inserting existing bacteria.
  • Use sterile equipment. Ensure your catheter and all related supplies and equipment are sealed and sterile before use. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Never reuse a single-use catheter. Intermittent catheters are designed to be used once and disposed of. Never reuse a catheter meant for single-time use.
  • Select the right size. Use the smallest size that inserts comfortably and allows for free and open drainage. Using catheters that are too large can cause tearing that breeds bacteria.
  • Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids will help flush out the urinary system and reduce the risk of bacterial infection.

Our Solution: Closed-System Catheter Kits

Closed-system catheters can significantly reduce your risk of CAUTIs when used correctly and in accordance with the intended design. These kits include a sterile, pre-lubricated catheter contained within its own collection bag, allowing a touchless insertion process that minimizes the risk of contamination and bacterial infection. The benefits of our closed-system catheter kits include:

  • Reduced CAUTI risk. Because your fingers never touch the catheter, the closed system keeps it sterile and reduces the risk of bacterial infection.
  • The closed catheter system gives the option of an attached bag or the choice to connect a bag to the catheter funnel. The kits may also include gloves, betadine, BZK wipes, and a drape for easy on-the-go use.
  • Free home delivery. We deliver intermittent catheter products right to your door with no shipping costs, ensuring you always have supplies on hand for comfortable relief.

Understanding a CAUTI is an important step in your journey with intermittent catheters. By staying informed and using the right tools, like our closed-system catheter kits, you can easily reduce your risk of infection and enjoy comfortable relief whenever you need it. You can even try before you buy through our catheter sample program to be sure it’s the perfect fit! Visit us online and contact our team to find the catheter product that delivers personal relief and peak bladder health.