Makomed's Weblog

Foley Catheter Insertion 2: Troubleshooting

Posted on: May 29, 2009

You are having Foley catheter complications. The balloon refuses to inflate. Your male patient is reeling in pain. And you still don’t have urine output.

What do you do?

To keep yourself from being a laughing stock of all the other nurses and keep your license, you must go back to the basics:

Remember that the urethra is a narrow hallway that leads into the bladder–which is metaphorically proportional to a warehouse. Forcing out the balloon will stretch the walls of your patient’s innards and cause a rage filled pressure and stinging pain. You need to think.

At this point, blood will probably spill out into the catheter bag. This is both a good and bad sign. It’s bad because you’ve already caused tissue damage and it’s hemorrhaging out.

You can still use it to your advantage, however, if you realize that YOU ARE NOT IN FAR ENOUGH.

If you retract slightly, add more lube and then slowly continue to advance the catheter you will see that glorious flood of urine come out. Go ahead, inflate the balloon to lock the catheter. This time, the patient won’t mind.

Success! I fixed the previous nurse’s mistake… but with residual effects. :-/

1 Response to "Foley Catheter Insertion 2: Troubleshooting"

My grandfather always has issues with self catheterization. I think I’ll show him this article later and see if ti helps. Thanks for the post!

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