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Analysis

Urinary Catheter Not Needed for Joint Replacement Surgeries

By John Commins  
   August 21, 2019

A retroactive study found no differences in urinary complications between patients who used a Foley catheter and patients who did not.  

Hip and knee replacement surgery can be performed safely without relying on a commonly used Foley urinary catheter, according to a new study in The Journal of Arthroplasty.  

Researchers at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit conducted a retrospective study of 335 patients and found no increased risk for post-surgery complications among those patients who were not catheterized.

"Until now, we didn’t have the research to show that we could perform the surgery without a Foley catheter," study senior author Michael Charters, MD, a Henry Ford joint replacement surgeon, said in remarks accompanying the study.

"All of our patients are now undergoing surgery without the catheter," Charters said. "It's a huge benefit for patients because it improves their mobility immediately after surgery. They can get up and walk around without being impeded by catheter tubes."

Before the study, Henry Ford clinicians commonly inserted a catheter into the patients' bladders in the operating room before surgery and removed the next day.

The researchers compared complications risks between patients with and without a catheter under epidural anesthesia between 2016 and 2018. Of the 335 patients, whose average age was 65, 103 used a catheter and 232 did not. Data was collected from patients' hospital admission and for the next 90 days.

Researchers found no differences in urinary complications, urinary retention, urinary incontinence or urinary tract infection between the two groups, Charters says.

“All of our patients are now undergoing surgery without the catheter. It's a huge benefit for patients because it improves their mobility immediately after surgery. They can get up and walk around without being impeded by catheter tubes.”

John Commins is a content specialist and online news editor for HealthLeaders, a Simplify Compliance brand.


KEY TAKEAWAYS

The researchers compared complications risks between patients with and without a catheter under epidural anesthesia between 2016 and 2018.

Of the 335 patients, whose average age was 65, 103 used a catheter and 232 did not. Data was collected from patients' hospital admission and for the next 90 days.

Researchers found no differences in urinary complications, urinary retention, urinary incontinence or urinary tract infection between the two groups.


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