The catheter type used will depend on the patient’s condition and health. The function of a catheter is to allow urine to drain freely from the bladder. The catheter may also be used to inject drugs into the bladder as treatment of specific bladder conditions.
Catheters can be intermittent, as they are removed after each catheterization. Alternatively the catheter can be permanent, known as an indwelling catheter. The actual catheter equipment is a tube made of silicone, polyurethane or latex. There are a few different designs for the catheter.
A flexible catheter, known as a Robinson catheter or intermittent catheter is a short term catheter. This catheter cannot stay in place on its own as it lacks a balloon at the tip. A condom catheter, also known as an external, urisheat of Texas catheter is used for men. There is less of a risk of infection using this type of catheter.
The most common catheter is a Foley catheter. This is a permanent catheter that stays in place due to a balloon on the tip of the tube. The balloon is inflated using sterile water. A different type of Foley catheter is a hematuria catheter. This is used specifically for patients that have had TURP hemostasis surgery.
A catheter with a curved tip is known as a Coude catheter. The curved tip makes it easier to insert the catheter. The catheter type can also come in different sizes. Larger catheters are required is the urine contains sediment, is very thick or bloody.