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BJU Int. 2011 Jan;107(1):77-85. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2010.09762.x. Epub 2010 Nov 4.

British Association of Urological Surgeons' suprapubic catheter practice guidelines.

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Pinderfields General Hospital, Wakefield, Eastbourne, UK.


What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? The suprapubic catheter (SPC) is a useful and widely used tool in urological practice. However, complications can arise from its insertion or ongoing care. Currently there are no guidelines relating to SPC usage. This study has reviewed the available clinical evidence relating to SPC usage. Where this is lacking, expert opinion has been sought. Guidelines are suggested to help maximise safety and ensure best practice in relation to SPC usage.


To report the British Association of Urological Surgeons' guidelines on the indications for, safe insertion of, and subsequent care for suprapubic catheters.


A comprehensive literature search was conducted to identify the evidence base. This was reviewed by a guideline development group (GDG), who then drew up the recommendations. Where there was no supporting evidence expert opinion of the GDG and a wider body of consultees was used.


Suprapubic catheterisation is widely used, and generally considered a safe procedure. There is however a small risk of serious complications. Whilst the evidence base is small, the GDG has produced a consensus statement on SPC use with the aim of minimising risks and establishing best practice (Table 1). It should be of relevance to all those involved in the insertion and care of suprapubic catheters. Given the paucity of evidence, areas for future research and development are also highlighted. This review has been commissioned and approved by BAUS and the Section of Female, Neurological and Urodynamic Urology. [Table: see text]


It is hoped that these guidelines will assist in minimising morbidity associated with SPC usage.

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