UTI Risk in Spinal Injury Reduced by New Catheter

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The use of a hydrophilic-coated catheter called SpeediCath (Coloplast) delays the onset of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in patients with acute spinal cord injury.

Compared with the use of an uncoated polyvinyl chloride catheter, SpeediCath significantly delayed the time to first UTI in individuals with a recent spinal cord injury (SCI), study findings suggest. The daily risk of experiencing the first UTI was decreased by 50%. Use of the Speedicath hydrophilic coasted catheter reduced the number of UTIs per month by 21% in the acute care period.

“The results showed that potentially people with a SCI in acute care could have one or two fewer antibiotic treatments—and this would, in turn, reduce the risk of them developing antibiotic resistance,” said investigator Katherine Moore, PhD, RN, Professor of Nursing at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. She conceded that her study was not a head-to-head trial (none of which have been conducted with the various hydrophilic coated catheter products on the market), but said the results, which have been submitted for publication to a peer-reviewed journal, are compelling.

The randomized, controlled study, which was funded by Coloplast, involved 105 patients with acute spinal cord injury who were randomized to receive a hydrophilic-coated catheter and 114 randomized to receive an uncoated catheter (Conveen, Coloplast). The subjects were recruited at 11 hospitals or rehabilitation units in the United States and four in Canada. They were aged 18 years or older, had a traumatic spinal-cord injury within the previous three months, and required intermittent catheterization for bladder management. Forty-five and 69 patients in the two arms, respectively, completed the study.

UTIs occurred in 40% of subjects who received the hydrophilic-coated catheters over the following six months compared with 65% of those who received the uncoated catheter.

In addition, the proportion of coated-catheter users experiencing at least one UTI was significantly lower. 

Study results were reported at the International Continence Society-International Urogynecological Association Joint Annual Meeting here.

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