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Foley Catheter (cont.)


After the Foley Catheterization Procedure

  • A slight irritation in the urethral area may be felt.
  • Switch to looser fitting cotton clothing.
  • Do not use chemical irritants in the genital area and keep the area clean.

The doctor will want to follow up with the patient in a few days. If the patient has any questions, he or she should not hesitate to call the doctor.

When to Seek Medical Care for Foley Catheter Complications

Call the doctor if the patient experiences the following symptoms:

  • Any pink or red urine or bleeding from the urethra
  • Symptoms do not go away
  • Symptoms of infection
    • Burning sensation upon urination
    • Urgency and frequency
    • Increased lower abdominal pain
    • Fever
    • Foul-smelling discharge coming from the urethra or in the genital area
    • Redness or swelling in the genital area
    • Pain in the urethral area or genital area
  • If the patient is sent home with a Foley catheter or has had a catheterization performed, he or she should go to the hospital's emergency department if they notice the any of the following:
    • Bleeding from the urethra
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Dizziness
    • Symptoms of infection such as urinary frequency, urgency, or pain or burning sensation; blood in the urine; fever; increased lower abdominal pain; or foul-smelling discharge
    • Symptoms of acute urinary retention such as urinary hesitancy, straining to void, decrease in size and force of the urinary stream, interruption of urinary stream, sensation of incomplete emptying of the bladder
    • Irritative symptoms such as urinary frequency, urgency, pain or burning; increased urination at night; or wetting the bed at night

Medically reviewed by Michael Wolff, MD; American Board of Urology


Aghababian, R. et al. Emergency Medicine. 2nd ed. Lippincott-Raven, 1992.

Clayman, C. "Urinary catheterization." In: The American Medical Association Encyclopedia of Medicine. Random House, Inc.; 1989.

Roberts, J. R. et al. Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine. 3rd ed. WV Saunders Co.; 1997.

Rosen, P. et al. Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 4th ed. Mosby-Year Book; 1997.

Tintinalli, J. E. et al. Emergency Medicine: A Comprehensive Study Guide. 4th ed. McGraw-Hill Co.; 1995.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/20/2016

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