What is a Bardex&Reg; Catheter?

Pamela Pleasant

A Bardex® catheter is enhanced silicone tubing that is inserted through the urethra and into the bladder. It is used to either drain the bladder of urine or to fill the bladder with fluids for medial testing. This catheter has a specialized protective coating to prevent infection. A combination of silver alloy and hydrogel coatings are used to dramatically reduce the risk of urinary infections associated with long-term catheter use. A Bardex® catheter has a small inflatable balloon on the end of the tubing that holds it in place within the bladder.

A Bardex catheter is a tube made of silicone that is inserted through the urethra and into the bladder.
A Bardex catheter is a tube made of silicone that is inserted through the urethra and into the bladder.

Biofilms are microorganisms that can attach themselves to the urethral wall and promote bacteria growth. If this happens while using a urinary catheter, it can result in a urinary tract infection. The bladder and urethra becomes inflamed and the symptoms include pain and burning during urination, foul smelling urine, and a frequent urgent sensation to urinate. A Bardex® catheter minimizes the adherence of the biofilms, so that the risk is also lowered for acquiring a urinary tract infection.

Treatment for some forms of bladder cancer may involve the use of a catheter.
Treatment for some forms of bladder cancer may involve the use of a catheter.

Irritation of the urethral mucosa is another problem associated with long-term catheter use. When this happens, the wall of the urethra becomes irritated because the silicone tubing constantly rubs against it. This can also cause pain and discomfort. The Bardex® catheter contains hydrophilic polymer and silicone- elastomer coatings that provide the right amount of lubrication to the urethral area. This can reduce these irritating symptoms and eliminate discomfort.

Bardex catheters, like other urinary catheters, connect to an external bag where urine is collected.
Bardex catheters, like other urinary catheters, connect to an external bag where urine is collected.

The Bardex® catheter can also eliminate the possibility of an allergic reaction. Using a leaching process, the maximum amount of allergens is removed from the latex used in making the catheter. There have been no confirmed reports of allergy related reactions to the Bardex® catheter and this makes it safe for people who have latex allergies.

Catheters may be used long term or for a short hospital stay.
Catheters may be used long term or for a short hospital stay.

Catheters can either be used for a short period of time to perform medical tests or for a short hospital stay. They can also be used long term, for patients with urinary conditions. Long-term Bardex® catheter users should follow guidelines to avoid getting urinary tract infections.

Painful urination and blood in the urine are symptoms of a urinary tract infection, which may occur as a result of wearing a catheter.
Painful urination and blood in the urine are symptoms of a urinary tract infection, which may occur as a result of wearing a catheter.

Wearing cotton underwear allows air flow to the catheter area and helps to keep it dry. While adjusting or caring for the Bardex® catheter, the hands and skin surrounding the area should be thoroughly cleaned. The urine bag attached to the catheter should always hang lower than the bladder area, to make sure the urine flows into the bag.

A Bardex catheter is inserted into the bladder through the urethra.
A Bardex catheter is inserted into the bladder through the urethra.

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Discussion Comments

anon1001055

Back when I was 17, I was hit by a car that was going 45 MPH. Well, by God’s grace, I survived that. But I did have to spend six months in the hospital, and a year and a half after that in rehab, learning to walk again, among other things. Anyway, to why I posted this: I had to have a catheter put directly into my stomach, because I could not eat at the time, or for some other reason. But I did have that catheter in me for the whole stay in the hospital, six months. And it surely helped in keeping me alive. Thank you, Lord, for giving me the way to survival.

lighth0se33

Catheter bags take quite a bit of maintenance. You have to watch them to make sure they don't overflow, and you have to clean and change them as needed.

My friend had a bag on his leg, and he said he had to switch it out every 45 minutes. Of course, he had been instructed to drink a lot of water to flush out his stones, so this may not be the usual case.

He was impressed that he did not develop an infection from the Bardex® catheter. His dad had been through a lot of sicknesses and hospital stays that required the use of a catheter, and he almost always got infected. So, this type of catheter exceeded his expectations.

OeKc05

My best friend had to wear a male catheter for about two weeks. He told me that though it felt all right once it had been installed, having it inserted hurt worse than anything he had ever felt.

He said it burned and just felt so wrong. His instinct was to fight the doctor, but the nurses held his hands down. I can imagine that it would be a reflex to reach out and push his hands away.

The doctor had told him about the benefits of the Bardex® catheter, but none of that mattered as it was going in. Of course, hours later, he was grateful to be wearing a lubricated, bacteria-repelling catheter.

cloudel

@StarJo – I have had kidney stones several times in my life, and I have ended up in the hospital for surgery several of those times. Decades ago, the catheters were nowhere near as good as Bardex® catheters.

My urethra would get so irritated while I was wearing them. I had to keep a catheter in until I passed all the bits of stone that the surgeon had busted up, and just having that thing in me was agony.

Last year was the first time I had gone in for kidney stones in quite some time, and I was so happy to hear about the Bardex® catheter. I had to wear it for a week, and during that time, I barely noticed it was inside me. Had it not been for the fact that my pee was draining into a bag, I might have forgotten.

StarJo

Years ago, when I was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, my doctor told me that I should never wear a catheter. He said that if I ever had to go into the hospital, I should tell the nurses this.

However, the Bardex® catheter sounds like it would be safe, if I ever absolutely had to have a catheter inserted. It seems that the makers of it have taken every precaution to make it safe.

I had no idea catheters could be coated with substances to guard against infection. I'm sure this is beneficial for many people, especially those who have kidney diseases or urinary tract conditions.

I am prone to urinary tract infections anyway, so I imagine I would be at great risk of getting one with a regular catheter. I would be more trusting of a Bardex® catheter, though.

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