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Urinary Drainage Bags – Buying Guide

Urinary drainage bags are used to collect urine from the bladder via a catheter or sheath. These urine collection bags are required by people who have urinary incontinence or are unable to urinate properly. They usually have graduated markers to indicate the amount of urine collected in the bag. Urine bags are made up of high grade, medical products which are totally safe to use. They maintain hygienic conditions around the users by preventing urine-spills.

Types of Urinary Drainage Bags

Urine drainage bags are broadly classified into two categories - urine leg bags and bedside drainage bags. Both these categories are briefly described below:

Urine Leg Bags

Urinary leg bags are worn under clothes to provide discreet urine storage. They are strapped to thighs or legs by means of straps or support devices. Leg bags are mainly worn during the daytime to provide freedom of movement to users. They are attached either to Foley or external catheters.

Urine Leg Bags

Bedside Drainage Bags

Bedside drainage bags are large capacity urine collection bags, ideal for overnight use or situations where people are restricted to bed. They easily hook on the side of a bed or wheelchair. Urinary bags have soft and flexible tubing that allows for tug-free and comfortable sleeping.

 Bedside Drainage Bags

Choosing the Right Urine Drainage Bag

Mobility Requirements:

  • If you are restricted to bed or wheelchair and tend to be less mobile, bedside drainage bags will best suit you. They have a large capacity to avoid frequent emptying.
  • If you move around a lot and require more freedom of movement, urinary leg bags will work best for you. They are strapped to legs and hidden under clothes to let you have a more independent lifestyle. But leg bags do not hold as much urine as bedside drainage bags hold.

Day or Night Use:

  • For night use, opt for bedside drainage bags because they have higher urine holding capacity. Higher capacity prevents the need for emptying the urine bag frequently.
  • During the daytime, when you need more freedom to perform routine activities, leg bags prove to be better. Also, they can be easily hidden under the clothing.

Urine Bag Capacity:

  • Large capacity catheter drainage bags should be chosen when you do not want to empty your urine bag again and again. Such bags work best for long journeys, night times or where easy toilet access is not possible.
  • Smaller capacity drainage bags provide easy handling and more discretion. They are emptied easily but more frequently.

Usability:

  • Reusable: Reusable urine drainage bags can be used for a longer span of time with regular cleaning. Regular cleaning is must to maintain hygienic conditions.
  • Disposable: Disposable urine drainage bags are to be discarded after one use. They help prevent the chances of having infections from repeated use.


Leg bags can also be chosen on the basis of below-given criteria to help suit your lifestyle:

Length of Inlet Tube:

Length of the inlet tube can be determined by deciding that where on your leg you want to attach the leg bag.

  • Short tube leg bag is used for the thigh.
  • Long tube leg bag is used for the lower leg.
  • Adjustable inlet tube is used to provide extra length to sheath patients.

Drainage Valves:

  • Twist Valve: Twist drainage valve allows for fast and easy emptying, even if you have limited dexterity. It reduces the chances of accidental spills.
  • Flip Flo Valve: Flip flo valve lets you easily open and close the valve just with a simple flip. It offers ease of use and added security.
  • Anti-Reflux Valve: Anti-reflux valve helps in preventing the backflow of urine from the drainage bag to the catheter.
  • T-Tap Valve: T-Tap valve allows for easy operations while emptying the urinary drainage bag.

How to use Urinary Drainage Bags?

Attaching a Urinary Leg Bag

  1. With soap and water, wash your hands thoroughly.
  2. Position the leg bag in a comfortable position, ensuring that the protective cap of the bag is towards you and the outlet valve is away from you. Secure the bag in place with the help of straps. Do not wrap the straps too tightly as they may cause improper circulation of blood.
  3. Take an extension tubing of appropriate length. Put it in the approximate position in which it is to be connected, keeping the plastic connector end towards the catheter. Make sure that the tube is long enough to prevent catheter pull and short enough to prevent kinking.
  4. If required, cut the tube end without plastic connector with scissors and clean it with isopropyl alcohol.
  5. From the leg bag connector remove the protective cap. Make sure that the drainage spout is closed.
  6. Clean the top connector of leg bag and the cut end of the tubing with an alcohol‐saturated pad. Attach the leg bag connector to the tubing.
  7. Clean the catheter end and the connector end of the tubing with another alcohol‐saturated pad. Attach the tubing connector to the catheter.
  8. Adjust the position of bag and straps as per your requirements.
  9. Dispose of alcohol pads, packaging, etc.
  10. Wash your hands with soap and water again to maintain hygienic conditions.

Attaching a Bedside Drainage Bag

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
  2. Make sure that the drainage spout of urine drainage bag is closed. Then remove the protective cap from the bag.
  3. Use an alcohol‐saturated pad to clean the catheter end and the connector end of the drainage bag tubing. Attach the drainage bag tubing connector to the catheter.
  4. Dispose of alcohol pads, packaging, etc.
  5. Wash your hands with soap and water.

Emptying a Urinary Drainage Bag

  1. Frequently empty your catheter drainage bag in a clean bathroom. Do not allow it to become more than half full.
  2. As the bag fills up, it gets heavier and becomes difficult to manage. Also, it may tug on the catheter.
  3. Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water.
  4. Keep the drainage bag below your bladder level.
  5. Hold it over the container or toilet.
  6. Open the drainage spout present at the bottom of the urinary drainage bag and empty the urine.
  7. Make sure that the bag does not touch the rim of the container or toilet.
  8. Clean the drainage spout with an alcohol‐saturated pad and close it tightly.
  9. Wash your hands with soap and water.

 

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