You might find that you or someone you know needs to have a urinary catheter at some point. Many different things can cause one to need to have catheters. Check on any of the major medical news sites or journals and you will find people who have to have them put in because of accidents, surgeries, loss of bladder control, age and more. Even though no one wants to talk about them, the truth is that they are very much a part of daily life for some people. Instead of avoiding talking about them if you happen to need one, you need to learn as much as you possibly can about the proper care of them.
Only when you know how to take care of the catheters will you be able to avoid one of the most common infections that patients get. The urinary tract infection, known as a UTI, is an annoying and sometimes painful infection of the urethra and the bladder. Even though they are common, you can avoid these infections when you exercise proper caution around your catheter. If you are in a hospital setting and the doctor or nurse is taking care of the device, make sure that they are always using sterile procedure. They should, but even the professionals can forget when they are in a hurry. Don't feel ashamed to remind them that they need to remain sterile.
If you are at home and you or your caregiver is taking care of the catheters, you will have to know the sterile procedure and follow it. This means that anyone who is touching any part of the catheter needs to make sure that their hands are clean and that they are wearing exam gloves. You need to be careful when you are opening all of the supplies so that none of them has any contaminants on them. They should never touch anything that isn't sterile.
Following procedure when you are doing this on your own might seem tedious at first. It will soon become second nature though. You will find that getting into the habit of sterile procedure is going to serve you well when you have an indwelling catheter.
If you find that you still have an infection, even though you are sure that you've followed the procedure properly, make sure that you visit your doctor. He or she will likely set you up on antibiotics or prescribe some other treatment that can help.