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Suprapubic Cystostomy And Catheter Insertion


  • Suprapubic cystostomy is surgery to create a stoma (opening) through the abdomen and into the urinary bladder. This opening is where a catheter is inserted to drain urine. Urine is excreted from the kidneys and passes through the ureters. It is stored for a short time in the bladder before it exits through the urethra. If urine is not drained, it may lead to urinary tract infections and other problems. Cystostomy surgery may be done because the flow of urine is blocked. It may be needed for men who have a swollen or injured prostate gland. It may also be needed for people who have an injury to the urinary tract and other conditions.
  • Before the surgery, you may need to drink more fluids to fill your bladder with urine. A stoma is created by making an incision (cut) on your abdomen. Another incision is made on your bladder. A catheter (thin rubber tube) is inserted through these incisions. The continuous opening through which the catheter is inserted is made to heal for long term use of a catheter. Having a suprapubic cystostomy done and catheter inserted may help drain your urine properly and relieve symptoms of urinary retention or blockage.


Take your medicine as directed.

Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

  • Pain medicine: You may need medicine to take away or decrease pain.
    • Learn how to take your medicine. Ask what medicine and how much you should take. Be sure you know how, when, and how often to take it.
    • Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine. Tell caregivers if your pain does not decrease.
    • Pain medicine can make you dizzy or sleepy. Prevent falls by calling someone when you get out of bed or if you need help.
  • Antibiotics: This medicine is given to fight or prevent an infection caused by bacteria. Always take your antibiotics exactly as ordered by your healthcare provider. Do not stop taking your medicine unless directed by your healthcare provider. Never save antibiotics or take leftover antibiotics that were given to you for another illness.

Ask for information about where and when to go for follow-up visits:

For continuing care, treatments, or home services, ask for more information.


Include fruits, vegetables and other foods with fiber in your diet. Fiber helps decrease constipation, which is a condition where you have dry, hard stools that are difficult to pass. Constipation may block the catheter and increase the pressure inside the bladder causing urine to leak. Ask your caregiver for ways to prevent and treat constipation.

Drinking liquids:

Men 19 years old and older should drink about 3.0 Liters of liquid each day (close to 13 eight-ounce cups). Women 19 years old and older should drink about 2.2 Liters of liquid each day (close to 9 eight-ounce cups). Good choices for most people to drink include water, juice, and milk. Avoid drinks that contain alcohol or caffeine. Alcohol and caffeine can cause bladder irritation and cramps. Some food items such as soup and fruit also add liquid to your diet. Ask your caregiver how much liquid you should have each day.

Emptying your urine drainage bag:

Empty a urine drainage bag when it is one-half to two-thirds full. Empty a full-sized drainage bag every eight hours. If you have a smaller leg bag, empty it every 3 to 4 hours. Do the following when emptying your urine drainage bag:

  • Place a large container on the floor next to your chair. You may also hold the urine bag over the toilet.
  • Remove the drain spout from its sleeve at the bottom of the urine bag without touching its tip. Open the slide valve on the spout.
  • Let the urine flow out of the urine bag into the container or toilet. Do not let the drainage tube touch anything.
  • Clean the end of the drain spout when the bag is empty. Ask your caregiver which cleaning solution is best to use.
  • Close the slide valve and put the drain spout into its sleeve at the bottom of the urine bag. Write down how much urine was in your bag if your caregiver has asked you to keep a record.

Preventing an infection:

  • Clean the cystostomy site and skin around it daily. Wash your hands before and after cystostomy care. Use germ-killing soap and warm water to wash your hands. You may also use germ-killing hand-washing gel. Put on a new pair of clean medical gloves when doing cystostomy care. You may be able to decrease cystostomy and skin care to 3 to 4 times per week instead of every day after a time. Ask your caregiver for more information about stoma and skin care.
  • Change your suprapubic catheter when needed. You, a carer, or a family member may be taught how to change the catheter. A suprapubic catheter usually needs to be changed every 4 to 10 weeks. In some cases the catheter may need to be changed earlier or more often. Ask your caregiver for more information on changing your catheter.
  • Change your urine bag or clean reusable bags. Clean your urine drainage bag at least once a week if it is a reusable bag. Ask your caregiver for information about changing or cleaning a reusable urine bag.
  • Keep the urine bag below the level of your bladder. This will prevent urine from flowing back into your bladder from the tubing and urine bag. Backflow of urine can cause an infection. Never raise the drainage bag above your stomach.


  • You have a burning pain in your cystostomy site.
  • You have blood in your urine.
  • No urine is draining into the urine bag.


  • You have a fever.
  • Your catheter comes out.
  • Your cystostomy site is red, has green or yellow discharge, smells bad, or is bleeding more than usual.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Learn more about Suprapubic Cystostomy And Catheter Insertion (Aftercare Instructions)

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