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Hydrophilic Catheters for Intermittent Catheterization

Hydrophilic Catheters for Intermittent Catheterization
Shweta Chaubey

For decades, straight catheters, also known as uncoated catheters, have been considered one of the most common types of intermittent catheters. These are often unlubricated and can cause trauma during catheterization. Hence, to make self-catheterization easier, hydrophilic intermittent catheters come into the picture.     

What is a hydrophilic catheter?   

The term hydrophilic means “water-loving.” It is also known as a no-touch catheter and, in every sense, is like the other types of catheter, except it comes with a polymer coating that absorbs the water and binds it to the catheter surface.   

When used with water or 0.9% sterile saline, a hydrophilic coated catheter makes the insertion and removal of the catheter smoother without a lubricating gel. Many of these catheters come with sterile water as a part of the catheter kit.  

Benefits of hydrophilic coated catheter  

Hydrophilic catheters are the most suitable for people who require intermittent catheterization. Since these are pre-lubricated, the process becomes much easier and less painful. Apart from a painless catheterization, there are many other benefits of using a hydrophilic catheter, such as -  

1. Enhances comfort  

The pre-lubricated coating layer is ideal for people who find self-catheterization uncomfortable or painful. Since most people must use 4-5 catheters daily, these can help minimize irritation and discomfort.  

2. Minimizes urethral injuries  

Frequent catheterization can cause urethral injury if the tubing is not properly lubricated. These catheters are more slippery and glide along the urethra with less friction than a pre-lubricated or uncoated catheter. It reduces pain, inflammation, and injury over time. Subsequently, research has also shown that such catheters minimize the likelihood of hematuria.   

3. Improves quality of life  

There is no need to manually lubricate the catheter, which makes the catheterization more convenient and hassle-free. You only need to squeeze the sterile water pouch and let the water enter the package to soak the catheter. It is easy to use these urinary catheters in a public restroom.   

4. Improves hygiene  

These are more hygienic, and some catheters have an insertion aid that lets you perform the process without touching the catheter. It reduces the chances of bacteria, viruses, and germs transferring from your hands into the urethra.  

5. Reduces urinary tract infections (UTIs)  

Clinical study findings indicate less urethral tissue trauma, which may reduce the chances of invasion by UTI-causing bacteria and may help reduce the incidence of UTIs. Furthermore, catheterization is performed under utmost sterile conditions, reducing the chances of urinary tract infection.  

How to activate a hydrophilic catheter? 

This type of urinary catheter comes prepackaged and may already be activated or come with sterile water for activation. To activate -  

  • Break the seal between the sterile water and the catheter.  
  • Read the instructions on the package. 
  • Shake the solution so it enters the catheter. 
  • Turn it upside down and hold it for half a minute to fully hydrate it. 

How to use it? 

Always use the catheter after it is activated.  

  • For male catheterization 

Insert the catheter into the urethra via the tip of the penis and keep pushing slowly until the urine drainage starts and the catheter is positioned near the bladder.  

  • For female catheterization 

It is advised to use a mirror to insert the catheter into the urethra and keep pushing the catheter slowly until you notice urine drainage and the catheter is positioned near the bladder. 

Remember, these catheters are made for single use only to keep up with hygiene.  

Best Hydrophilic Catheters Available At HPFY 


Where to buy the best hydrophilic catheters online? 

Health Products For You has been online since 2002. We carry a wide range of urological products, including intermittent catheters of various kinds, such as hydrophilic catheters, uncoated, coude tip, and more. Explore our catalog today to find the best catheters at affordable prices.  

Consult your urologist if you are still confused about what catheter to buy or how to choose one.  


Disclaimer: All content found on our website, including images, videos, infographics, and text were created solely for informational purposes. Our reviewed content should never be used for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment of any medical conditions. Content shared on our websites is not meant to be used as a substitute for advice from a certified medical professional. Reliance on the information provided on our website as a basis for patient treatment is solely at your own risk. We urge all our customers to always consult a physician or a certified medical professional before trying or using a new medical product.


HPFY Shweta Chaubey

Shweta Chaubey

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Shweta Chaubey, has been a Health Products For You contributor since 2021. An advocate-turned-writer, her desire to create meaningful and positive content has brought her to HPFY and what better than writing ...

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