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Evid Based Nurs 5:125 doi:10.1136/ebn.5.4.125
  • Qualitative

Adults experienced a long term indwelling urinary catheter as living with the forces of flowing water


 
 QUESTION: What are the experiences of adults living with indwelling urinary catheters?

Design

Phenomenology.

Setting

Central New York, USA.

Participants

14 adults (age range 35–95 y, 64% women) with long term indwelling urinary catheters (duration 6 mo to 18 y) who lived in the community. The primary reason for wearing the catheter was urinary retention caused by disease conditions, including multiple sclerosis, cerebrovascular accident, enlarged prostate, and spinal cord injury.

Methods

7 participants were interviewed once, and 7 were interviewed twice. Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed. The transcripts were analysed to identify themes. Written summaries of the data were clarified and verified with participants.

Main findings

Living with a urinary catheter was found to be like living with the forces of flowing water. The following themes emerged. Vulnerability: the force of flowing water was a metaphor to describe the similarity of the movement of urine into the catheter bag to water that is let into and out of a dam. …

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