There is an acclamation period when first initiating an intermittent self-catheterization, or “cathing” protocol. This time frame can vary for each person from a few days to a few weeks or possibly longer. The average time it takes for a person with full urethral sensitivity to “desensitize” to cathing is approximately 3-5 days. A child can most often experience burning, stinging, or acute irritation as the urethra becomes used to the friction and movement of the catheter. Sometimes there can be a little blood or even a lot of blood, if the urethra tears or a false pass is created, but this is rare. To minimize this risk, always use plenty of lubrication or a pre-lubricated, hydrophilic catheter to reduce friction and side effects of self-cathing.
Are there any side effects to self-cathing?
Adjusting to cathing can be tough, with a range of practical, physical and emotional challenges. You don’t have to figure it out alone. Call and talk to a member of the me+ support team today. Call 1-800-422-8811 (M-F, 8:30 AM-7:00 PM ET).