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External "condom" catheter
External catheters for male patients are underused. A national survey of hospitals found that external catheters were almost always or always used in only 14% of hospitals, however, there was a statistically higher use in VA hospitals.1 This low level of use persists despite evidence that condom catheters lower the risk of infectious and other complications of urinary catheterization and are more acceptable to patients.2 When using condom catheters, it is important to choose an appropriate size to improve fit and adherence despite patients’ movement.
1. Saint S, Kowalski CP, Kaufman SR, et al. Preventing hospital-acquired urinary tract infection in the United States: a national study. Clin Infect Dis 2008;46:243-50.
2. Saint S, Kaufman SR, Rogers MA, Baker PD, Ossenkop K, Lipsky BA. Condom versus indwelling urinary catheters: a randomized trial. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2006;54:1055-61.