Jump to Content

Intermittent Self Catheterization (ISC)

Intermittent self-catheterization (ISC) is used to treat bladders that do not empty fully.
You will be taught how to insert a urinary catheter into your bladder by a health professional – this can be done in a hospital, clinic or at home. Urinary catheters are inserted into the bladder at intervals throughout the day, or when you feel the need to go to the toilet. It is sometimes necessary to catheterize during the night as well. Once the urine has drained out, the catheter is removed. Catheters for ISC should be used once and then thrown away.
Most people feel apprehensive about performing Intermittent Self Catheterization. It can be a bit awkward to start with but with practice you will soon become confident, your local health care professional will offer you support until you feel able to manage alone. Most people go on to say that they find it easy to self-catheterize after a time. There are different types of catheters – we can help you to find the right one for you.

How do I self-catheterize?

It is very important to wash your hands before touching or inserting the catheter – you may choose to use a fresh baby wipe if there is no wash hand basin in the toilet.

Once you have washed your hands, do not touch anything else except your catheter.

Preparation – For women:

You have to ensure that your vulva (intimate area between your legs) is clean. A daily shower or bath is recommended using a mild soap, but when you go out it is useful to keep a small pack of baby wipes in your handbag or pocket to enable you to ensure the area is clean.

There are several ways to catheterize – you can learn to insert the catheter while sitting on the toilet or in your wheelchair, when standing or by putting one foot up onto the toilet seat to enable you to locate your urethra more easily. You can experiment and decide which way feels most comfortable. If you are a woman and find it hard to locate your urethra, try using a mirror to see where your urine comes out. Once you have done this several times you will probably not need a mirror. You can do it over the bath if it’s easier.

Preparation – For men:

You have to ensure that the area around the tip of the penis is clean. It may be that a daily shower or bath is sufficient but when you go out it is useful to keep a small pack of baby wipes in a pocket to enable you to ensure the area is clean. Men may stand or sit to perform intermittent self-catheterization

The task:

When you are ready, take the catheter by the drainage end from the packaging and gently push the other end into your urethra. When the catheter has reached the bladder, urine will drain from it. Make sure all the urine has drained from your bladder before removing it.

To remove the catheter, gently twist it and pull down. Don’t worry if it doesn’t come out first time. Try again, continuing to pull gently.

Retrieved from: https://www.bladderandbowelfoundation.org/bladder/bladder-treatments/conservative-treatments/intermittent-self-catheterisation/

  • Wheeler's has helped me maintain my health and independence through their urological supplies. Not only by helping me get the type of one-time use catheters I need, but also bringing me extra supplies in the event I run out before my shipment arrives. They are always there for you when you need them!
    Joe Snyder
  • Wheeler’s Medical Supply is a great company to work with. They are very helpful, dependable, kind, and caring. They are always there for you, just a call away!
    Luther Delp
  • Wheeler’s Medical knows me, they know my family, and they know my needs. I get to talk to a real person and my orders show up on time!
    Wes Johnson
  • Wheeler's is a reputable firm specializing in catheter and incontinence supplies. Though they are a complete medical supply company, they have been noted to subspecialize in neurogenic bladder disorders, specifically those involving spinal cord injury. We plan on including them as one of the supply services that we utilize here in the Department of Urology at Mayo Clinic in Florida.
    Steven P. Petrou, M.D.
  • Their service and patient interactions have added considerable to patient's understanding of their chronic medical conditions involving the bladder. The company has provided patients excellent service with same day delivery. Their knowledge of the catheters has aided patients in selecting catheters and has added to their overall education. Without their service, the alternative vendors are not interactive or helpful.
    Douglas A Swartz, M.D., FACS
  • Wheeler's employees know first hand how important our medical supplies are to our well being. They are with you each step of the way and make sure you get what you need when you need it.
    Robert Mudge
  • I always get supplies and great customer service at Wheeler’s in a timely fashion. A-1 service all around!
    Richard Collier
  • Wheeler’s Medical has provided a peace of mind when it comes to reliability. I know I will get my supplies on time and exactly what I ordered. The comfort of knowing that I can speak to someone who can understand and appreciate the struggles that come with having a spinal cord injury is priceless.
    Amelia Nyberg
  • I've been getting my supplies through Wheeler’s for a little over a year now and couldn't be happier with their services. Dealing with them is fast, easy, and worry free.
    Chris Howell
  • Here is why I continually use Wheeler's- unparalleled customer service, knowledge based on first-hand experience, and it's locally owned.
    Michael Flores

Get in Contact with Wheeler's Medical Supply