Trudy Triumph's Neurogenic Bladder Blog

Inserting a Female Intermittent Catheter

I have learned the very most about urinary catheters from on-line support groups, just discussing what works.  I use a much lubricated ready-to-use intermittent catheter that is expensive.  I have heard from some women that they think the one I just love is too short, yet it works perfect for me.
 It is called the Speedicath by Coloplast.

Do you know how important all of this is?  Maybe you do not need to use a catheter now, but perhaps because of paralysis, you will someday.  I just feel so passionate to help you,  the patients and health care providers; the caring it takes to understand that inserting a catheter to help someone else is not hard.  Some companies sell insertion kits that even collect the urine.  I beg you to pay attention how long you or someone you love is using a Foley Catheter (one that stays in for a long time.)   An infection is a sure bet after thirty days, and for me for some reason, only after a few
days.  If you are a nurse or health care provider ask to use an intermittent catheter on your patients. It is better for them: it reduces their chance of frequent Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs).

It is unfair that we are not able to purchase intermittent catheters in drug stores.  As so many of us fall in the category of the baby boomers age, I am sure there will be more of us needing toileting aids.  They sell diapers in the drug store, why not catheters?

I find it a bit offensive that so much of the medical literature tells the woman to use a mirror when inserting a catheter.  We females have hidden parts and need to just feel.  It does not take a rocket scientist to feel the clitoris.  It kind of stands out on its own, if you know what I mean.
 The vaginal opening is the large hole you could put your finger in if you had to, so you can tell where that is without a mirror . . . easy.  So the next step is to understand the urethral opening is between your clitoris and your vaginal opening.  Gently press the catheter in that area and soon you
will find the spot.  There is definitely an opening, so as you probe gently it will happen, I promise.  

I start by washing my hands with soap.  The catheter I use is self-lubricated so that takes out a big step.  If I accidently touch the tip of my catheter with my hand or another object I throw it away, to fight infection.   I do not clean my labia at the time of insertion, since I shower once a day.  (I have been told by my urologist that this is not necessary, anyway.)  After I use my catheter I throw it away because reusing catheters can cause bladder infections.  

If at all possible my suggestion to you is to use a single-use catheter.

 This information is helpful for inserting a female catheter


2 Responses to “Inserting a Female Intermittent Catheter”

  1. Reply Nerdgirl

    I’m not sure I agree with the statement that using mirrors to insert a catheter is offensive. When someone isn’t used to finding their urethra cathing is actually really difficult. I used a mirror for several months until I got the hang of it. I still keep the mirror because sometimes when I have inflammation it is really hard to cath. I think it is a good learning tool and good emergency backup and women should be encouraged to use them for those purposes.

  2. Reply Trudy

    I understand what you are saying. And that is what works for you so I am glad. Actually I was told to use a mirror as well but since I do not have 3 hands, that technique was lost on me. I wonder for a woman if a picture of a woman’s down under might work well too.
    I guess my point in all of it is that it might be hard to imagine for men that we NEVER see that area of our body but we have areas that are very distinct by feel.
    Thanks for your comment. I say, whatever works! trudy

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