Discharge Instructions: Bladder Training with a Suprapubic Catheter

You are going home with a tube that drains urine from your bladder. This is a suprapubic catheter. Your healthcare provider put the catheter right into your bladder through a tiny cut (incision) in your belly. You'll need to train your bladder to work as it did before. It takes time after illness or injury for you to feel the urge to urinate. And your bladder may not empty completely. So, you'll need to check the amount of urine in your bladder.

By clamping and unclamping the catheter, you'll learn to urinate the way you did before you had the catheter. The amount of urine that you pass through the urethra will increase. And the amount of urine draining from your catheter will decrease. When you reach less than 50 to 75 ml from your catheter for a few days, your provider may want to remove it.

Home care

  • Use the bathroom at least every 3 hours.

  • Try to pass your urine normally into a container. The container should be a measuring container. Then you can figure out how much urine you passed. Don't be discouraged if this takes some time for you to learn.

  • Measure the amount of urine in the container.

  • Unclamp your catheter.

  • Drain the urine from your catheter.

  • Measure the amount of urine.

  • Clamp your catheter.

  • Write down the amount of urine that you passed normally. And write down the amount from your catheter.

  • Add the two amounts together and record the total. Also record the date and time.

  • Try to increase the amount of urine you pass normally. Try to decrease the amount left in your catheter.

  • Tell your healthcare provider when you are draining less than 50 to 75 ml from your catheter.

Follow-up care

Make a follow-up appointment, or as directed by your healthcare provider.

When to call your healthcare provider

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following:

  • Urine that is cloudy, bloody, or smells bad

  • Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as directed by your provider

  • Shaking chills

  • Rash, itching, redness, swelling, or drainage at the catheter site

  • Full feeling in your bladder or bladder pain

  • Catheter that is clogged or feels clogged

  • No urine drainage

  • Urine leaking around catheter

  • Catheter or stitches that fall out

© 2000-2022 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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