Catheter in the Shower
Is it possible to shower with a catheter in place?
It is also the best and greatest advice given when we inform patients to always follow the treatment plan from their own healthcare provider before implementing any ideas found on an online source.
Many times after a surgical procedure, the doctor suggests to not tamper with the original dressing applied post-procedure within the first two days. After this time frame, it is not abnormal to commence your daily showering routine even with a catheter in place. Bathing is a tub with captured water is never a good idea because of the accumulation of the bacteria allowing it to enter into the body via the route of the catheter or worse, the surgically closed incision. A bath would increase the risk of infection when sitting in a water filled bath tub.
At CathWear, we recommend our patients utilize extreme caution while taking a shower to limit the chances of accidently pulling (or dislodging) the catheter. It is critical to clean around the catheter site with some antibacterial soap or hibiclens solution. Don’t try to push/force water in the site as this could cause more harm than good. Also, clean the catheter itself in a downward direction away from the site so the bacteria is being pushed further away from possibly entering the body. After showering, please re-dress your site if necessary, maintain dry, following your provider(s) instructions.
It’s also important to monitor the site for any excessive drainage, redness, swelling or pain from your catheter site. If these symptoms occur then please contact your provider immediately for further instructions. The site may have to be cleaned more frequently to maintain adequate hygiene.
Hector F. Arce, Jr. BSN, RN, CCRN