Foley's catherter

Foley's catheter is a thin, sterile tube, inserted in urethra to bladder to drain urine. Because it can be left in place in the bladder for a period of time, it is also called an indwelling catheter.

It is held in place with a balloon at the end, which is filled with sterile water to hold it in place. The urine drains into a bag and can then be taken from an outlet device to be drained.

Parts of Catheter

Looking closer....


The diameter of the catheter is measured in millimeters. Authorities recommend the "narrowest and softest tube" that will serve the purpose. Rarely is a catheter larger than size 18 F required, and sizes 14 or 16 F are used more often. Catheters greater than size 16 F have been associated with patient discomfort and urine bypassing. A size 12 catheter has been successfully used in children and female patients with urinary restriction.

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