How Should You Change Your Urine Bag
You should change your urine bags every 5-7 days and be sure to wash your hands and dry them with warm soapy water every time you change or empty your urine bags . That is to say, urine bags should be changed once or twice a month. If it smells bad or looks dirty, replace it as soon as possible. Follow these steps to change bags:
Wash your hands.
Disconnect the valve at the end of the pipe near the urine bag. Don’t pull hard. Don’t let the end of the tube or bag touch anything, including your hand.
Clean one end of the tube with rubbing alcohol and cotton balls or gauze.
If the bag is not new, clean the opening of the bag with rubbing alcohol and cotton balls or gauze.
Attach the pipe tightly to the bag.
Tie the urine bag to your leg.
Wash your hands again.
How To Empty A Catheter Bag
This article was medically reviewed by Luba Lee, FNP-BC, MS. Luba Lee, FNP-BC is a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner and educator in Tennessee with over a decade of clinical experience. Luba has certifications in Pediatric Advanced Life Support , Emergency Medicine, Advanced Cardiac Life Support , Team Building, and Critical Care Nursing. She received her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Tennessee in 2006.There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 125,967 times.
You may need to use a catheter at home if you are having difficulties urinating due to an illness, infection, or disease. You or a carer will need to empty the catheter bag to ensure you dispose of the urine properly. There are two types of catheter bags: large catheter bags and leg catheter bags. You and your carer should learn how to empty and clean both bags so that your catheter and its equipment are always sterile and clean.
How Can I Attach Or Remove The Drainage Bag
You use the same steps to attach or remove a large drainage bag and a leg bag.
- Gather supplies:
- Alcohol pads
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How Should You Empty Your Urine Bag
Always empty your urine bags in a clean toilet. Do not allow the bag or duct openings to touch any toilet surfaces. Pour the urine in your urine bag into the toilet at least two or three times a day, or when it’s a third to a half full. Follow these steps to empty your bag:
Wash your hands well.
When you empty, place the bag under your hip or bladder.
Put the urine bag on the toilet or the special container your doctor gave you.
Open the spout at the bottom of the bag and pour it into the washroom or container.
Don’t let the bag touch the edge of the toilet or container.
Clean the nozzle with rubbing alcohol and cotton balls or gauze.
Keep the spout tight.
When To Call The Doctor
A urinary tract infection is the most common problem for people with an indwelling urinary catheter.
- Pain around your sides or lower back.
- Urine smells bad, or it is cloudy or a different color.
- Fever or chills.
- A burning sensation or pain in your bladder or pelvis.
- You do not feel like yourself. Feeling tired, achy, and have a hard time focusing.
- Are not sure how to attach, clean, or empty your leg bag
- Notice your bag is filling up quickly, or not at all
- Have a skin rash or sores
- Have any questions about your catheter bag
Also Check: Chronic Urinary Tract Infection Causes
Essential Steps To Change A Leg Bag
Welcome back to LINC Medicals series of blogs designed to help catheter users and their carers.
Changing your leg bag
Leg bags should be changed every 5-7 days. Longer times between leg bag changes helps to reduce the risk of infection getting into the closed drainage system.
Changing your leg bag safely involves 5 easy steps:
1. Wash your hands with warm soapy water and dry them
2. Grip the catheter at the join between the drainage tube and the inflation tube and grip the leg bag above the connector. Rotate the catheter gently whilst pulling away from the connector.
3. Take off the cap from the new bag and dispose of the old one
4. Gently but firmly push in the new bag into the catheter. Be careful not to touch the open catheter end or the connector on the new drainage bag. Once connected wash your hands again.
5. Make a note of the date you changed your leg bag on the bag date box, and pop a note in your calendar to remind you to change your leg bag after 5-7 days.
Troubleshooting your leg bag
Sometimes you might notice that yor leg bag is not filling. If thats the case, check the catheter and bag for any kinks or twists in the top of the bag or catheter tubing. Also check the position of the bag. If it is higher than youre your bladder, you will experience poor drainage.
We hope you found this blog useful in your journey to picking a leg bag.
How To Empty The Urine Bag
- Wash your hands properly
- Make sure the bag is below the hip or bladder as it empties.
- Place the bag over the toilet or any container where you can empty it.
- Open the spout at the bottom of the bag to empty the urine. Do not allow the spout to touch the toilet or container.
- Clean the spout again with rubbing alcohol, and a cotton or gauze.
- Close the spout, and make sure it does not touch the ground.
- Clean your hands properly again.
- Always empty the urinary drainage bag when it is half filled.
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What Do I Need To Know About A Foley Catheter Drainage Bag
A Foley catheter is a sterile tube that is inserted into your bladder to drain urine. It is also called an indwelling urinary catheter. The tip of the catheter has a small balloon filled with solution that holds the catheter in your bladder. The catheter is attached to a drainage bag that holds the urine. A large drainage bag is usually used during the night. A leg bag can be worn under your clothes during the day. The leg bag is worn around your calf or thigh. It allows you to be in public without anyone knowing you have a catheter.
Clean The Drainage Bag
- Have a clean backup bag or other drainage device ready.
- Follow these steps:
- Wash your hands well with soap and water.
- Disconnect the bag from the catheter tubing. Connect the tubing to the backup bag or drainage device.
- Drain any remaining urine from the bag you just disconnected. Close the drainage valve.
- Pour some warm soapy water into the bag. Swish the soap around, being sure to get the corners of the bag.
- Open the drainage valve to drain the soap. Close the valve.
- Use a certain solution to clean the bag if your healthcare provider advises one. Solutions that may be advised include:
- 2 parts vinegar and 3 parts water.
- 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach mixed with a 1/2 cup of water.
Also Check: Chronic Urinary Tract Infection Symptoms
How Can I Prevent Problems With My Catheter And Drainage Bag
- Drink liquids as directed. Ask your healthcare provider how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you. Liquids will help flush your kidneys and bladder to help prevent infection.
- Check for kinks in the tubing and straighten them out.
- Check the tape or strap used to secure the catheter tube to your skin. Make sure it is not blocking the tube.
- Make sure you are not sitting or lying on the tubing.
- Make sure the urine bag is hanging below the level of your waist.
Cleaning A Nighttime Drainage Bag:
- In the morning, take off the drainage bag, put on the leg bag, and clean out the drainage bag the same way as you cleaned the leg bag .
- Hang the drainage bag up to dry during the day.
Clean your leg bag and drainage bag every day and replace it whenever your doctor tells you to. This is normally once a month.
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Urinary Catheter Care In The Home
What’s included in this resource?
- 3 Assessment Questions
What is this article about?
As part of routine care, you should ensure that there are no kinks or loops in the drainage bag tubing and the urine is being continuously drained both the catheter and draining device are connected securely the drainage bag is being supported by a stand or hook so that the outlet and tubing are kept off the floor the drainage bag is below bladder level at all times, including during transportation and ambulating the catheter is attached to the client with a securing device and the drainage device is closed unless it is being emptied.
When To Contact A Doctor:
Of all catheter users, individuals with indwelling/foley catheters are at highest risk for infections of the urinary tract. Contact your healthcare provider if you have:
- Milky, cloudy or foul-smelling urine
- Red or pink urine
- A fever greater than 101 degrees, or shaking chills
- Pain or burning in your urethra, bladder, or lower back
- Swelling, draining, or redness in your urethra
You should also contact your healthcare provider if no urine has drained from your catheter in six to eight hours, or if your catheter is leaking or falls out.
Preventing Infections And Other Complications
Having a long-term urinary catheter increases your risk of developing urinary tract infections and can also lead to other problems, such as blockages.
To minimise these risks you should:
- wash the skin in the area where the catheter enters your body with mild soap and water every day
- wash your hands with soap and warm water before and after touching your catheter equipment
- make sure you stay well hydrated you should aim to drink enough fluids so that your urine stays a pale colour
- avoid constipation staying hydrated can help with this, as can eating high-fibre foods, such as fruit and vegetables and wholegrain foods
- avoid having kinks or bends in the catheter and make sure any urine collection bags are always kept below the level of your bladder
Read more about the risks of urinary catheterisation.
Cleaning Your Leg Bag
Clean your bedside bag each morning. Clean your leg bag each night before changing to the bedside bag.
- Wash your hands well.
- Disconnect the tube from the bag. Attach the tube to a clean bag.
- Clean the used bag by filling it with a solution of 2 parts white vinegar and 3 parts water. Or, you can use 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach mixed with about a half cup of water.
- Close the bag with the cleaning liquid in it. Shake the bag a little.
- Let the bag soak in this solution for 20 minutes.
- Hang the bag to dry with the bottom spout hanging down.
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When Should You Contact Your Healthcare Provider About Your Urine Drainage Bag
Contact your healthcare provider if you have:
- Cloudy, foul-smelling urine.
- Red or pink urine, mean that there is blood in the urine.
- A fever greater than 101 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Pain or burning in your urethra, bladder or lower back.
- Swelling, draining, or redness in your urethra .
You should also contact your healthcare provider if no urine has drained from your catheter in six to eight hours or if your catheter is leaking.
Symptoms of a urinary tract infection may include:
- A need to urinate often.
- A painful, burning feeling in the area of the bladder or urethra while you are urinating.
- Nausea or vomiting.
You may also feel bad all over â tired, shaky, washed out âand feel pain even when you are not urinating. The urine itself may look milky or cloudy or even reddish if blood is present.
Changing The Urine Collection Bag:
Before changing a leg bag or drainage bag, assemble the following materials:
- A clean bag
- If cleaning the bag , white vinegar
Remember that if your leg strap gets dirty, you can wash it with soap and water.
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Emptying A Reusable Bag
*Please note that because a leg bag is smaller than a regular drainage bag, it will have to be emptied more frequently. Empty a leg bag when it is half-full, or at least twice a day.
Please note, it is a good idea to occasionally secure the leg bag on the opposite leg. A good time to remember to make the switch is after a shower or bath.
Check And Clean The Catheter Tubing
- Check the tubing. If there are kinks, cracks, clogs, or you cant see into the tubing, youll need to change to new tubing as you were shown by your healthcare provider.
- If the current tubing can still be used, wash it with soap and water. Always wash the tubing in the direction away from your body. Don’t pull on the tubing.
- Dry the tubing with a clean washcloth or paper towel.
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How To Clean Your Catheter
Itâs best to clean your catheter twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. Youâll need:
- Clean washcloth
Then, you can follow these nine steps: