My first catheter change

Back in June, I shared my story of getting a suprapubic catheter fitted.

Emma’s catheter bag

10 weeks on, I’m pleased to say it’s been a success and no major problems have occurred.

There has only been two minor incidents so far; one night nothing was flowing and I spent an hour drinking bottles of water trying to get it to flow again. Then a fortnight ago, I had the desperate urge to pee and ended up needing to use the toilet and urinated normally for the first time in 2 months… strange feeling! It turned out to be blockage but was resolved quickly.

Apart from that, it has been perfectly fine with no infections or complications.

This week, I was scheduled for my first catheter change. When you first get a catheter fitted, the first change is at 10 weeks then the following changes are every 12 weeks.

As a way of spreading awareness of catheters and advising present and future catheter users, I wanted to share my catheter change experience to you.

A catheter change is done by a district nurse who comes to my house. The procedure only takes a few minutes. Every nurse does it sightly differently depending on the patient. The way mine was done is the nurse wiped around my suprapubic area, deflated the balloon, pulled the catheter out then immediately replaced it with the new catheter. It wasn’t painful but quite uncomfortable.

Here is a video I took of the procedure taking place. (Look away now if you’re squeamish!)

So if you’re considering a suprapubic catheter or due your first catheter change, have no fear! It’s a simple procedure that will benefit your life for the future!

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