Prolonged use of a catheter can lead to the development of a catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI). This is caused by bacteria entering the catheter and reaching the urinary tract.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection that affects the urinary tract system and includes the bladder, urethra, and ureters kidneys.
A catheter is a flexible tube used to drain urine from the bladder, which is collected into a bag. They are used for many reasons, such as for patients who cannot empty their bladder naturally or for draining the bladder before, during, or after surgery.
Some of the symptoms of a CAUTI are:
- Pain in the lower abdomen
- Strong-smelling urine
- Urine leakage around the catheter
- Burning sensation when passing urine
There are many measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of a CAUTI, such as:
- Limiting the length of time a catheter is used
- Following proper catheter insertion and removal procedures
- Proper aseptic technique and sterile equipment