Urovalve, of Newark, N.J., has filed a patent for a device that facilitates insertion of catheters, such as Foley catheters, the company said.

The device, which is in development, is novel because it is designed to add sufficient rigidity to a variety of commonly used catheters, thus enabling their insertion when penetration would otherwise be difficult, yet still allow the catheters to remain flexible enough to negotiate the curves of the urethra.

“Our newest device, a universal catheter inserter, is designed to enhance placement of the desired catheter in one single step, compared to the successive dilations, etc., currently associated with difficult Foley catheter insertions,” said company CEO Harvey D. Homam, PhD.

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“This innovative approach is not only expected to save time for the patient and his urologist or other healthcare professional, but also to enable selection of the most appropriate or the most comfortable catheter, compared to opting for a catheter only because it is stiff enough to be inserted. 

“Our new device’s design also includes locking mechanisms to keep it captured within the catheter throughout the insertion procedure,” Dr. Homan added. “This should provide increased control for the health-care professional, as well as significantly reduce the risk of trauma to the patient.”