This week I underwent life changing surgery and was inserted with a suprapubic catheter. A suprapubic catheter is a hollow flexible tube that is used to drain urine from the bladder. It is inserted into the bladder through a cut in the tummy, a few inches below the navel. I was given light general anaesthetic which put me to sleep while the procedure was done.
My reason for having this surgery is because I’m finding it extremely difficult to access public toilets with hoists and changing tables. Plus I find it very time consuming to go to the toilet, losing precious time to complete work and enjoy leisure activities. Having a catheter now means I don’t have to worry about needing to pee on long journeys, require a hoist at work placements and venues and have more time to carry out daily tasks without long toilet breaks.
Many people may feel embarrassed by the thought of having a catheter or have assumptions people have them because they constantly wet themselves. However this is wrong. Some people have them due to a bladder medical condition and others, like myself, use a catheter to improve their quality of life and independence due to their disability or health condition.
I believe people who have catheters should not be ashamed but embrace their catheters. They should be proud that they have an easy resource for their urine and creates a sense of freedom from the challenges of accessing toilets and suffering a urinal condition.
Therefore I want to start a new online trend where everyone shares an image of their catheter bag and add the hashtag #shareyourcatheterbag. This trend will aim to raise awareness of catheters, show the positivity of them and that you shouldn’t be ashamed to share it. If you, or someone you know, has a catheter, take a photo of your catheter bag and share it online with the hashtag #shareyourcatheterbag – Get sharing!
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