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Catheters, I've Never Been AWAKE When I've Gotten One...I'm NERVOUS!! Any Advice?

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  • Catheters, I've Never Been AWAKE When I've Gotten One...I'm NERVOUS!! Any Advice?

    Hi Everyone,

    I am going to see my urologist tomorrow afternoon, and he is probably going to want to do a catheter to test for an infection. (Or at least that is what he wanted to do last time, but I was so scared and panicked last time that he didn't do it...I left there feeling humiliated that I am a grown woman afraid of getting a catheter!!) I have had catheters 3 times in the past before, but they were inserted after I went under anesthesia for surgery. I don't recall ever having had one while I am awake before.

    My sister said that I will 'feel like I have to pee really bad' afterwards and that I will be miserable for days. That freaks me out!! I've never heard that before?? When I had surgery to remove my colon in 2004, I had a catheter for about 5 days straight, and when they removed it, it DID burn a few times when I peed after they took it out, but I felt better after that.

    I know they say to relax, and that lidocaine helps?? Should I ask the nurse if she minds using that?? Any other tips??

    Please say a little prayer for me, I'm nervous!! I am going back to try and figure out what it is that is bothering my bladder. The doctor wants to check and see if my bladder has been damaged from numerous abdominal surgeries I have had in the last 3 years. This means some scary, embarassing testing. So I'm sure my office visit will be nothing compared to all these other things. Not sure if I will turn out to have IC or not, but we have to start someplace to figure it out, right??

    Thanks, everyone!!
    "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." Phillipians 4:13

  • #2
    Hang in there, Ashley!

    Hi Ashley!
    Hang in there, Sister! I will be praying for you. I myself have had catheters put in while I was awake pre-surgery, and it's true, if you try to relax, especially your abdominal muscles, it should make it better. For me there was a pinch at first, but that was it. I don't think you ever get used to being poked and pinched and tested and examined.

    Please let us know what the results are from your test(s).
    Blessings and Hugs,


    • #3
      Why dont you just tell him you prefer to do the clean catch method. There is no reason why he has to use a catheter to get a urine sample instead of doing the clean catch method first. If you are worried about it, tell him. Never let anyone do anything to you that you feel uncomfortable doing. It is your body not his! I can see if it was absolutely nessasary, but just to have a urine sample,I would think that you could pee in a cup using the clean catch method just fine. That is just my opinion though. Good Luck and hope all goes well.


      • #4
        Well I got rescheduled for April 26th, so I have a little while longer to worry about this I guess, LOL !!

        Maybe he WON'T need to do a catheter, and I'm worrying for nothing?? Last time I went in, I was feeling horrible, and I think that might have been why he wanted to do a catheter to check for infection?? My main problem is frequency and occasional urgency. I probably use the restroom once every 2 hours, and when it is nearing time for my period, maybe more often than that. He wanted to do a test where they test how much my bladder can hold. But my big question was, if the test shows my bladder CAN'T hold much, what can they do about that?? I was told that it's a test where I have to show up with my bladder as full as I can stand it, and then I empty it so they can measure, and then they insert a catheter and refill it a couple times to test it again. And all this in front of a nurse and doctor !! I have trouble just peeing at church when there is somebody listening in the next STALL...put me in a room with an audience, and I'm not sure my poor bladder can perform at all !!

        I was in a lot worse shape when I went in to see him last, which was a little over 2 years ago. I had some Gyn-type surgery in January of 2006 and the doctor removed just a TON of scar tissue that had formed since my colon removal surgery, and I have felt some better since then. I am mainly going in so that I can keep refills on my Oxytrol prescription. And I suppose if he still wants to do the test, I need to listen to his advice. But what can they really do if your bladder doesn't hold much?? Does anyone know??

        And is every 2 hours considered going more often than normal??
        "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." Phillipians 4:13


        • #5

          Don't worry its not bad. Your uro has probably done so many he is fantastic at it. I have had 2 in the office awake with no anesthesia. It was uncomfortable but not painful. The second one I had, I hardly felt. It didn't feel like I had to pee after, and didn't burn when I did. Dont worry. When you get the cath, try to push your bottom through the exam table. This allows your muscles to relax. Good luck!

          IC diagnosed officially via cysto/urodynamics 1/26/07

          Grade II Endometriosis diagnosed via lap 12/11/07

          "Fall down seven times, Stand up eight."

          "Life is a tragedy for those who feel and a comedy for those who think."

          Current Treatments:
          Interstim Since 5/25/07!
          Birth Control


          • #6
            I think anyone who has IC, going pee every two hours is not uncommon at all. In fact I have heard of people with severe IC that have to go every 20 minutes.
            I also have that problem where I cannot pee in front of anyone no matter what. I always like to refer to it as being a shy pee'er :o) If you know you will not be able to pee in front of anyone, tell him up front. You dont want to have to pay for any test that you know you will not be able to complete. And they charge plenty for these tests.

            Still, if he just wants to check for an infection, tell him you prefer to do the clean catch method rather than the catheter. Just be sure you clean well with that disinfectant sheet they give you and pee out some urine first and then fill up the cup.

            I guess I would just listen to what he has to say. Ask him what his reasons for doing this test is, and what could he do to help you if the test does show abnormalties. But if you cant pee infront of people, then I am not sure I would go through with it. Be sure you tell him you cannot pee in front of anyone as this can make the test inconclusive and you will still be charged for the test though. Hope all goes well.


            • #7
              Sounds like he wants to do a urodynamics test -- that is where you have to pee in a special toilet (looks like a funnel) and then catheters are inserted and you are filled up with x-ray contrast material. They watch your bladder fill with X-rays, and you have to tell them when you begin to notice you have to pee, when you'd go if you were at home, when you'd go if you were out and about, and when you're absolutely about to explode. Then you need to pee the stuff out for them, one more time. Because the catheters are hooked up to a computer, the computer can record all sorts of information about your bladder.

              This test measures how well and how much your bladder fills, how much force you can pee with, if you are straining to urinate, if you have bladder spasms, if your bladder is the correct shape... all kinds of things. They do it to rule out conditions like neurogenic bladder, overactive bladder, stress or urge incontinence, etc.

              I had one done in December of last year and it was uncomfortable, but not horrible. The two female nurses in the room even exited the room while I peed the stuff out to give me privacy -- the little toilet thingy can measure the flow rate and the computer records what happens, so they don't have to be in there while you're peeing. They DO have to be in there for the part where they fill you up, though.

              Good luck with it...

              *Diagnosed with severe IC in 2004
              *Also diagnosed with PFD, fibromyalgia, chronic myofascial pain, IBS, migraines, allergies/asthma, dermatographism
              *Kept trying a million different treatments for all these things until I found what works, and I am doing okay these days with the help of a cocktail of medications and the InterStim, which was first placed in 2007. [I have had 2 revisions - one in 2010 when my battery died and had to be replaced, and one complete replacement (lead and generator) in 2012 after a fall on my stairs caused my lead to move.]
              *Current meds include Atarax (50mg at night), Lyrica (150mg twice a day), Xanax (0.5mg at night and as needed), Zanaflex (4mg at night), hydrocodone (10/325, every 6 hours as needed), Advair, Nasonex, Singulair (10mg at night), oral contraceptives, home instills containing Elmiron and Marcaine (as often as I need to do them).

              **I am not a medical authority nor do I offer definitive medical advice. I strongly encourage you to discuss your medical treatment with your personal medical care provider. Only they can, and should, give medical recommendations to you.