How to remove an indwelling urinary catheter in female patients
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence & Practice Previous     Next

How to remove an indwelling urinary catheter in female patients

Alison Bardsley Senior lecturer in primary care, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Coventry University, Coventry, England

Rationale and key points

This article aims to assist nurses to undertake the removal of an indwelling urinary catheter in female patients in a safe, timely, effective and patient-centred manner, while maintaining the patient’s privacy and dignity. It is important for the nurse to be competent in undertaking this procedure, and to be aware of local and national policies on catheter removal.

Indwelling urinary catheters should be changed only when clinically necessary, or according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.

Urinary catheters should be removed using sterile equipment.

The balloon of the indwelling catheter must be deflated before removal, and the catheter should be removed slowly to minimise trauma.

Reflective activity

‘How to’ articles can help you update your practice and ensure it remains evidence-based. Apply this article to your practice. Reflect on and write a short account of:

How you think this article might change your practice when removing an indwelling urinary catheter.

How you could use this article to educate your colleagues.

Nursing Standard. 31, 19, 42-45. doi: 10.7748/ns.2017.e10525


Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 12 April 2016

Accepted: 09 August 2016

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