Review of Intermittent Catheterization and Current Best Practices

Diane K. Newman, MSN, ANP-BC, CRNP, FAAN, BCIA-PMDB; Margaret M. Willson, MSN, RN CWOCN


Urol Nurs. 2011;31(1) 

In This Article


Intermittent catheterization is the preferred method of emptying the bladder in patients with neurogenic bladder and is an integral part of urologic nursing care. Although it is the most common method used by patients with a spinal cord injury and other neurologic disorders, there is very little research on best practices for catheterization and long-term catheter use and care.

While there has been an attempt to develop guidelines, most nurses still use their clinical judgment to determine which technique and type of catheter to use. Clinicians need to be aware of current recommended guidelines as well as participate in evidence-based research to be knowledgeable and effectively educate patients on long-term CIC use, complications, and catheter care.