Like many bedridden patients, my Mother has a foley catheter. She was facing chronic UTI’s with ecoli one after another, after another. It was suggested by her doctor that she have a suprapubic catheter surgically put in. We did – but it didn’t work for my Mom (she is the minority because suprapubic catheters have a very high success rate in patients). We kept the suprapubic in for about 8 months but had it removed and went back to a foley catheter. The UTI’s with ecoli continued.
Then one day a new nurse practitioner came to see my Mom and she made a suggestion – “Flush the catheter at least once a week and change the foley catheter every 2 weeks instead of every 30 days”. We contacted her urologist and asked if we could try this to see if it works (since nothing else had). We received an order from the doctors office and the process started. (For more information on foley catheter placement and care, consider reading this short article – Foley Catheter Placement And Care – Care Guide bit.ly/1Sf3bRv).
We have been told that any time you have a “foreign body” in your body such as a foley catheter, it’s common to have some type of infection present. But not to the point of ecoli and definitely not the pain she was experiencing. I am simply delighted that this procedure has worked for my Mom and I continue to pray that the frequent change of her foley catheter and the flushing will continue to keep the UTI with ecoli at bay.
If you’re experiencing problems with UTI’s with ecoli, speak with your doctor about other alternatives. I firmly believe that “one way” is not the only way. There are different sized foley catheters, the balloon can be inflated to different sizes, etc. Keep asking. Keep educating yourself. Remember, you are their advocate.