Guys: the Longer You Cath, the More You May Want a Coude

Wheel:Life recently surveyed more than 100 readers who use intermittment catheters on a daily basis, and we were surprised to learn that many catheter users have never tried any other catheter than the one they were first shown while in rehab years ago.  The majority of our survey participants, especially men who have used catheters for 10 years or more, shared that they aren’t familiar with any catheters other than the one they’ve always used. That’s why Wheel:Life is focusing on catheter education as a continuing series within our online magazine.

If you’re a man who is using a traditional straight intermittent catheter, and if you have experienced occasional bleeding or difficulty inserting the catheter that you are using daily, you may be dealing with internal scar tissue that is making it harder for you to self-catheterize.

Don’t worry, you’re not alone if you’re experiencing this issue. More than 30% of Wheel:Life survey respondents said that they are having trouble inserting the catheters they are using today, and 20% reported that they were also experiencing occasional bleeding when self-cathing.

Photo courtesy of Get Out Enjoy Life 2013. Submitted by Rick Quintero
Photo courtesy of Get Out Enjoy Life 2013. Submitted by Rick Quintero

Trauma and Irritation Can Cause Strictures and False Passages

Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing bleeding or irritation while cathing.
Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing bleeding or irritation while cathing.

What’s making it harder to insert your catheter? Why are you experiencing occassional bleeding?  Imagine getting a scratch on your hand, and you accidentally pick the scab.  Chances are, if you do this often enough, you’ll be left with a scar on your hand where the scratch originally had been.

Now think about the inside of your urethra, and the scratches that may be happening in this sensitive area every time you insert a catheter.  Those scratches may cause occassional bleeding and, over time, scar tissue from those scratches can build up on the inside of your urethra, just like a scar on your hand or knee.  That kind of internal scar tissue in your urethra can form either a stricture or a false passage inside your urethra, and that can make it very difficult for you to insert the catheter you’ve always used.

Additionally, some men have very tight sphincters or an enlarged prostate which makes it difficult to pass the catheter into the bladder.

If you are experiencing any of these issues, talk with your doctor. You may have a couple of options in terms of different kinds of catheters that may give you a less painful, more comfortable experience when self-cathing.  One of those options is using an intermittent catheter with a coude tip.

A catheter with a special, curved (Coude ) tip may make passing the catheter in your bladder easier. If a catheter with Coude tip is needed, your doctor or nurse can show you how to use it, and you can also contact your local medical supplier to request a sample of a coude catheter before you decide to begin using it regularly.

Try Cure Medical’s Coude Tip Intermittent Catheter

The Cure Medical Coude Tip Intermittent Catheter is a high quality DEHP-, BPA- and latex-free product that always has fire-polished eyelets. These sterile, single use catheters for males feature polished eyelets, tip options, and funnel ends.  Cure Medical Coude Tip Intermittent catheters are available in French sizes 10-18.

cure coude tip cathetersCure Medical CEO John Anderson offered the following thoughts regarding the use of coude tip catheters for men who may be experiencing difficulty in catheterization.

“Many end users will use one type of catheter for years and will eventually find it more difficult to insert. Unfortunately, people don’t realize another option is available. Straight intermittent catheters are an excellent starter product, but over time false passages or strictures can develop.  Coude is a great option in that case,” Anderson explains.

Photo courtesy of Get Out Enjoy Life 2014. Submitted by Jeff Hayne
Photo courtesy of Get Out Enjoy Life 2014. Submitted by Jeff Hayne

“The Cure intermittent catheter is a leader because of the shape of the coude tip. Some brands of coude catheters are pointed at the tip.  Cure has a rounded edge at the tip, in addition to the smooth polished eyes for drainage. As a result, the Cure coude catheter inserts much easier and doesn’t feel as stiff as a coude catheter with unpolished eyes,” Anderson continues.

It’s important to note, too, that the length of time that you have been self-cathing is not the only factor that may contribute to your need to switch to another style of catheter.  Your personal experience with cathing may be different than another individual’s, so your choice of catheter should be based on your own unique needs and preferences.

Everything about your catheter should be easy to use – in terms of how you open it, add lubrication and insert the catheter.If any of that is not the case, look at other options like a coude style of catheter. There’s definitely something out there that’s right for you.

If you would like to try the Cure Coude Catheter, you can request a free product sample by going to


Paying It Forward By Choosing Cure Medical

Bob gives a lot of credit to his support system for his success in life after spinal cord injury.
Bob gives a lot of credit to his support system for his success in life after spinal cord injury.

Cure Medical also donates 10% of their net profit to neurologic research in search for solutions for spinal cord injuries and central nervous system disorders. This is what truly sets Cure Medical apart from other catheter manufacturers.

Founded by quadriplegic Bob Yant in 2008, Cure Medical strives to improve lifestyle options for catheter users by putting their money where their mouth is.  Yant is a C4/C5 spinal cord injury survivor, whose injury was caused by a diving accident in Newport Beach, CA when he was 19 years old.

As Yant became a catheter user, he struggled due to the lack of comfort and ease of use with substandard catheters.He worked tirelessly to change the catheter realm not only for himself, but for the spinal cord injury community as well.

Yant has since strived to find ways to make catherization more efficient, more comfortable, and less stressful for catheter users through the products that are developed and offered by Cure Medical. Yant is also on the board of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation and an active fundraiser for the organization.

Learn more about the spinal cord injury research projects that Cure Medical supports at:

WheelLife-Breaking-News-on-Spinal-Cord-Regeneration-Research-with-Dr.-Oswald-Steward-3Note: This article is for informational use only and is not intended to be construed as medical advice. Ask your doctor about issues related to your health and neurogenic bladder, and if Cure Catheters are a good fit for your continence care needs.

More Clinical Resources: Free Nurse CEUs


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