Catheter Connection

A Reflection on 20 Years After Todd Brown's Spinal Cord Injury

by Jessica August 20, 2014 11:43
Today marks a full twenty years that have passed since our founder and CEO Todd Brown’s accident, which ultimately led to his idea to create 180 Medical. While it’s not an anniversary we celebrate, we want to take a moment to reflect back on the past twenty years and accentuate the positive outcome after his tragic accident.
todd brown ceo and founder of 180 medical
Many of you may know by now what an inspiring life Todd has led thus far. From an early age, he was very active and participated in various sports like basketball and track. He grew up around motorcycles. His dad was involved in a sport called motocross, which is a physically-demanding, fast-paced form of motorcycle racing on mostly off-road, closed courses. “Me and my brother started racing from a very young age,” said Todd, recalling his passion for the sport. Then in 1994, after graduating college and marrying his wife Annette, a tragic accident during a motocross jump left Todd with a T-7,8 spinal cord injury. He was just 25 and was now paralyzed from the waist down.

While in the hospital, Todd called his closest friends and family to let them know what had occurred. His wife and family rushed to be by his side, and one thing people noticed was that his indomitable spirit had not been dampened. “He basically just made it like ‘God put this in front of me and gave me some challenges,’ and it didn’t make a difference to him,” Randy Brown, his brother, recalls.

Todd knew his life would never be quite the same as it was before his accident, but he was determined to persevere. “I had a business, I had a family, and I was just trying to get out of rehab,” Todd said, recalling those difficult first few months.

On top of that, he battled seven urinary tract infections for seven months in a row. Urinary tract infections are one aspect of difficulties that the newly paralyzed can deal with as their bodies adjust to having to use intermittent catheters in order to drain their bladder. Todd only knew to clean and reuse the catheters, as he’d been taught to do in rehab. But the infections were severely impacting the quality of his life, plus he had to deal with frequent trips to the doctor and constant doses of antibiotics. Feeling worn down and tired of being sick, Todd knew there had to be a better way.

Despite all of that, the drive to stay active was todd brown wheelchair race 180 medicalstill inside Todd, so he began doing wheelchair races, and he participated in his first wheelchair marathon just six months after his motocross accident. One day, while attending a wheelchair race, a fellow athlete friend talked to Todd about his issues with frequent UTIs and asked if he’d ever heard of sterile-use cathetization (which is using a catheter one time and then disposing of it, versus reusing after cleaning it) and gave him a closed system catheter to try out. Todd’s health began to improve, and he realized that, with continued use of the right equipment and the right techniques, his quality of life had done a 180 degree turn back in the right direction. 

It was not long after this that Todd decided he wanted to start a company that would be able to provide the right equipment, great service, and education to anyone who needed catheters and other supplies. It was a leap of faith, and he and his wife didn’t have much starting out, but Todd was ready to make his dreams a reality, so they started their medical supply company out of their own garage. Todd just knew he could make a difference in others’ lives.

Over those 20 years since Todd’s accident, he has not only started 180 Medical, which is one of the fastest-growing, nationally-accredited providers of sterile use catheters, urologic supplies and ostomy supplies, he has also accomplished much more. He and his wife are both strong advocates for adoption. He still takes times to visit spinal cord injury patients in rehab, and he will often mentor the newly injured. Even with his continually growing business, he finds time for his family and his passions, like fishing, hand-cycling, snow-skiing, and staying active in his church.

Todd’s story inspires everyone who hears it. He is a unique, driven individual who has turned what could have potentially been a negative situation into one that has not only earned him a successful business but helped countless others who may be facing challenges of their own.


About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

4 Helpful Smartphone Apps for Catheter and Wheelchair Users

by Jessica July 23, 2014 14:04
helpful smartphone apps for catheter-users and wheelchair-users

Just about everyone has a smartphone these days. Technology has risen to meet our many needs, even those we didn’t know we had. There are games, music programs, helpful tools, financial planners, and many apps specifically geared towards health, such as WebMD. But were you aware that there are some apps that could specifically help you out with your self-catheterization regimen? As the slogan goes, “there’s an app for that,” so check out our short list of applications in iTunes that may be a good addition to your smartphone today!    


UroBladderDiary

$1.99 in iTunes
urobladder diary appDuring your appointments, your treating physician may have recommended that you keep a record of how much liquid you’re drinking per day and/or how much and how often you are voiding your bladder. It may not sound like much fun to keep writing this information down in a big notebook or journal, but with this app, you can just type in each entry. Does the doctor want to see the record? This app easily converts the text you’ve input into a PDF file which can be emailed over to your physician’s office and included in your electronic medical records. No paper waste necessary, and it keeps your voiding diary completely private.  

urobladder diary screenshot
 

Wheelmate™

wheelmate coloplast smartphone appFree in iTunes
Are you a wheelchair user on the go? This app is specifically designed to find clean wheelchair-accessible bathrooms and parking spaces for those in wheelchairs. Currently, this app has more than 30,000 locations spread over 45 countries, and more are added and verified by wheelchair users to make sure the information is correct. This is especially helpful for those on the go. Maybe you have a vacation you'd like to plan in advance, or you're traveling for your job and want to make sure you'll have parking and bathroom access. This may be the app for you.


wheelmate app screenshot

CathNow

Free in iTunes
coloplast cathnow appLike most catheter users, you probably have a set schedule of when you are supposed to self-cath, according to your health care provider's prescribed regimen. But sometimes time can get away from us when our day is busy, and of course, we all have forgetful days! There's whose days are busy or even just for those of us who are a little forgetful, there’s an app by Coloplast created to remind you to it’s time to cath with alarms for your smart phone.

coloplast cathnow smartphone app screenshot

LoFric Micturition Chart App

Free on iTunes and Google Play
Like UroBladder Diary, this chart allows you to input the liquids lofric micturition chart smartphone appyou are drinking throughout the day and the amount of urine you are voiding from your bladder. However, this version is specifically to record this information over 2 or 3 days. Once completed, you can bring the chart to your next appointment or email it. Again, this app is helpful for less paper waste along with more privacy, because you don’t have to carry around a paper chart or notebook with you.

lofric micturition chart app screenshot

One or all of these smartphone apps may offer some practical support to you even on a daily basis as a catheter or wheelchair user. Whether you need help finding clean, wheelchair-accessible bathrooms, staying on time with your prescribed self-cathing regimen, or measuring your urine output or more, it can all be at the mere touch of  a button on your personal smartphone.


  
About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

180 Medical Product News: Introducing Cure Hydrophilic Catheters

by Jessica July 9, 2014 13:10

Interested in keeping up with the latest catheters available on the market? 180 Medical is always ready to share the scoop on the newest products with you, and today, we'd like to introduce you to Cure’s new hydrophilic catheter that has become recently available.

What are the key features of the Cure hydrophilic catheter?

The Cure hydrophilic catheter has a coating that, upon activation by the included water packet, becomes super-slippery and smooth for an easy, comfortable catheterization process. Since the hydrophilic coating is bonded directly to the catheter tube, the lubricant will not slough off from the tube as it enters your urethra, maintaining a smooth friction-free catheterization experience from start to finish.

Cure Hydrophilic Catheter

Here are some additional features:
  • As with all Cure intermittent catheter products, the hydrophilic catheter is DEHP-free and latex-free.
  • Clear sleeve for easy handling
  • Tight packaging around the catheter for full contact with water
  • Sterile water sachet
Cure hydrophilic catheter with clear sleeve and water sachet
  • No soaking time required! Just pop the included water packet, and it’s ready to go.
  • Cure Medical donates 10% of their net profits to scientific research related to spinal cord injuries and CNS disorders.
  • Color-coded funnel for easy French size identification

How do I use the Cure Hydrophilic Catheter?

For more information regarding how to catheterize, feel free to call one of our trained specialists so we can walk you through that process. 180 Medical also has one-of-a-kind catheterization instruction materials we can send to you with your order, including a step by step DVD and printed color brochures.  

Is this product available in my size and required type?


Currently, it is available in straight tip, 14 fr, male length. 12 fr and 16fr, and coude tip catheters are coming soon! 

Which Cure products does 180 Medical carry?

180 Medical proudly carries Cure’s entire line of available intermittent catheters, including their all 100% DEHP-free, latex-free vinyl straight and coude tipped intermittent catheters and closed systems.

How can I find the catheter that's right for me?

Just contact 180 Medical by filling out our online inquiry form, connect to us via Live Chat, or give us a call at 1-877-688-2729 to speak to one of our highly trained, friendly specialists. We are happy to help you find the right catheter for you, and we can verify your insurance to determine if and how these products are covered on your policy.

Stay tuned to our blog for future product news, informative articles, and company events!

About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing and Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

180 Medical Product News: Introducing GentleCath Hydrophilic Catheters

by Jessica June 9, 2014 14:49
180 Medical Product News

Interested in keeping up with the latest catheters available on the market? 180 Medical is always ready to share the scoop on the newest products with you, and today, we'd like to introduce you to ConvaTec's new line of GentleCath hydrophilic catheters.

What is a hydrophilic catheter?

Some are unfamiliar with what a hydrophilic catheter is, because it's relatively new technology, so we'll shed some light on that first. The word "hydrophilic" basically means it readily absorbs or mixes with water, and a hydrophilic coating on a catheter does just that.

A hydrophilic catheter has a type of coating which, once activated by water, becomes lubricated with a slippery, smooth coat that's directly bonded to the catheter tube itself. This means there is no need to manually apply lubricant to the catheter, creating a touchless, sterile environment and a smooth catheterization experience from start to finish.

Compared to uncoated catheters, hydrophilic catheters may help to reduce the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs).

What are the features of the GentleCath hydrophilic catheters?

ConvaTec’s GentleCath hydrophilic intermittent catheters are coated with a hydrophilic polymer that reacts with water to become super-smooth and slippery to fully lubricate the catheter for insertion into the body. No addition lubricant is needed at all! Because the hydrophilic coating is bonded directly to the catheter, the water-activated lubricant will not slough off as the catheter enters your urethra, maintaining a smooth, friction-free catheterization experience from insertion to withdrawal.

Here are some additional features:


  • No Touch Handling Strip: This blue strip is included with each GentleCath hydrophilic catheter, which makes it easier to handle the catheter during insertion and helps to keep your hands from touching the catheter directly. The no touch strip helps keep the process more sterile, minimizing risk of infection. It's also easily removable.

  • Sterile Water Sachet: Gentlecath hydrophilic intermittent catheter with water sachet and no touch handling stripThis easy-to-pop water sachet allows you to use a catheter where ever you have privacy. With an included water packet, you can rest easy, knowing you'll never have to search for a sterile water source to activate the lubricant on your hydrophilic catheter. This makes catheterization convenient, whether you're at home or on the go!

  • Wall Attachment Tab: The package includes a blue circular wall gentlecath hydrophilic catheter wall attachment tab packageattachment tab. When you pull off the blue circle, it reveals a sticky surface that allows you to attach the package to the wall while you wait the 15 seconds for the water to activate the hydrophilic coating.

  • The latex-free vinyl catheters also feature color-coded funnels to help you determine French size. For more on how to determine French size based on the catheter funnel colors, see our informative article on Catheter French sizes.
gentlecath color coded funnels catheters

How do I use the GentleCath Hydrophilic Catheter?

Take a look at this quick introductory video direct from ConvaTec, which gives you some step-by-step instructions and a good look at the catheter features in action.



For more information regarding how to catheterize, feel free to call one of our trained specialists so we can walk you through that process. 180 Medical also has one-of-a-kind catheterization instruction materials we can send to you with your order, including a step by step DVD and printed color brochures.

Is this product available in my size and required type?

  • GentleCath coude tip and straight tip catheters

    GentleCath's hydrophilic straight tip intermittent catheters are available in female length (8 inches) and male length (16 inches). Male length catheters feature French sizes from 8 Fr to 18 Fr, and the female length come in French sizes from 8 Fr to 16 Fr.
  • GentleCath's hydrophilic coude tip intermittent catheters are male length (16 inches) and are available in French sizes from 8 Fr to 18 Fr.

Which GentleCath products does 180 Medical carry?

180 Medical proudly carries GentleCath's entire product line, including their 100% latex-free PVC (vinyl) straight intermittent catheters, coude tip, red rubber catheters, hydrophilic catheters and hydrophilic catheter kits.

How can I try out GentleCath's hydrophilic catheters and find a catheter that's right for me?

Just contact 180 Medical by filling out our online inquiry form, connect to us via Live Chat, or give us a call at 1-877-688-2729 to speak to one of our highly trained, friendly specialists. We are happy to help you find the right catheter for you, and we can verify your insurance to determine if and how these products are covered on your policy.



About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for nearly 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

180 Medical Product News: Introducing Hollister Essentials

by Jessica May 1, 2014 12:11
180 Medical Product News
Interested in keeping up with the latest catheters available on the market? 180 Medical is always ready to share the scoop on the newest products with you, and today, we'd like to introduce you to the recently released line from Hollister!

Tell me more about Hollister.

The Essentials line is manufactured by Hollister, a global manufacturing company with a goal to provide top-quality products to improve the lives of those who use their supplies and to serve the needs of healthcare professionals as well. They currently provide products to over 90 countries, and the company was originally created in 1921. You can learn more about Hollister's mission and their history at their official website.

What are some features of the Hollister Essentials intermittent catheters?

Essentials intermittent catheters are 100% latex-free medical-grade PVC and come in an easy-open package. Each catheter features fire-polished eyelets to create a smoother insertion and help minimize any trauma or irritation during catheterization. These eyelets are also offset to maximize flow of urine. The catheters also feature an enhanced grip on the flexible color-coded funnel for easy handling. The Essentials line products are available in straight tip with lengths of 6 inches (female length) and 16 inches (male length) and in coude tip (available in male length, 16 inches, only). 

Take a look at the side by side comparison of the catheters here:



  • You can see an immediate difference in the funnel shape and size between the two. While the traditional line's funnel is smooth, the Essentials catheter funnel is more flexible and features an enhanced grip for easier handling.
  • The Essentials coude catheter funnel also features a guide notch to indicate the coude tip's position during insertion.

Hollister Apogee Essentials catheter funnel guide strip notch


Which of these Essentials products does 180 Medical carry?

We are proud to carry the entire line of Hollister Essentials intermittent catheters.
  • Essentials Coude is available from 8 Fr to 18 Fr.
  • Essentials Straight tip intermittent catheters are available in female length (6 inches) from 8 Fr to 14 Fr, pediatric length (10 inches) from 6 Fr to 10 Fr, and male length (16 inches) from 6 Fr to 18 Fr.
If you're interested in trying out one of these Essentials catheters, contact 180 Medical by filling out our online inquiry or give us a call at 1-877-688-2729 to speak to one of our highly trained, friendly specialists.


About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for almost 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

Todd Brown's Story & the Unique Perspective of 180 Medical

by Jessica April 3, 2014 16:31
After our recent post to assuage fears about catheterization, you may have some more questions or some curiosity about our founder and CEO, Todd Brown, and a little more about 180 Medical's unique perspective in the catheter supply industry.

Let's start at the beginning with Todd's inspiring story. Todd grew up active in sports, including basketball and track. He loved riding his motorcycle and got involved in motocross, which is a physically-demanding, fast-paced form of motorcycle racing on mostly off-road, closed courses. After graduating college, he was still actively involved in motocross. In 1994, at the age of 25, a tragic accident during a motocross jump left Todd with a T-7,8 spinal cord injury.

Adjusting to Life in a Wheelchair

Even though this was most definitely a life-changing event for him, he was determined to never give up.  After two months of rehabilitation, he went back to work. Wanting to keep an active lifestyle, he even participated in his first wheelchair marathon just six months after his accident.

Out of the many difficulties that faced Todd in his new life as a paraplegic was dealing with frequent urinary tract infections, which occurred consistently as he cleaned and reused his catheters. On top of that, he dealt with frustration with getting the right medical supplies he now needed from companies who were totally unfamiliar with the right choices of product for those with spinal cord injuries. Where were the companies who had people who actually used catheters and those related medical supplies? Where were the suppliers who cared about their customers' needs? 

Todd's Life Begins to Turn Around

One day, while attending a wheelchair race, a fellow athlete introduced Todd to the idea of sterile use (that is, using a catheter one time and then disposing of it, versus reusing after cleaning it) and gave him a closed system catheter to try out. Right away, Todd's health improved. The recurrent Urinary Tract Infections that had previously continually dragged down his immune system lessened. He felt like his quality of life had done a 180 degree turn.

The Company Begins

Shortly after this, Todd and his wife started a medical supply company out of their garage. He had high goals for this company and hoped to help other people who had similar medical needs. He knew he wanted to have a well-trained, compassionate staff and a good selection of the best quality supplies available.

Today...

Today, 180 Medical is one of the fastest-growing, nationally-accredited providers of sterile use catheters, related urologic supplies, and ostomy supplies. We have a continually growing staff of caring specialists, including some who are disabled and self-catheterize on a daily basis, so they have first-hand knowledge and experience to share.

Of course, no one can tell his story as well as Todd himself. Take a few minutes to watch this inspiring video of interviews with Todd and his family.





About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for almost 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

So You've Been Told You Need to Start Using Catheters -- Now What?

by Jessica March 31, 2014 11:30
Change is not always easy. It's completely natural to feel some fear when your doctor tells you that you will need to use intermittent catheters going forward as part of your treatment plan.

We here at 180 Medical understand how daunting it can feel to be told that your life will be different going forward, whether due to injury, surgery, disease, or another diagnosis that requires the use of catheters.

Some of our employees and Todd Brown, 180 Medical CEO and foundereven our founder/CEO Todd Brown, after devastating spinal cord injuries, have experienced the transition to life in a wheelchair. They understand what it's like to  face new challenges after leaving the rehabilitation hospital and the long process of finding and adjusting to the use of various medical supplies specifically for their needs. They continue to use intermittent catheters (among other supplies) every single day, so these employees have a personal experience to share with you -- not just with the process of intermittent catheterization but also a true understanding of those initial feelings of concern over this new process that will be a part of your life, whether temporarily or long-term, depending upon your health professional's prescribed treatment plan.


While your doctor should be your go-to for medical advice, 180 Medical is committed to being a support for you by giving the best service possible while also providing you with the resources and education you need to feel fully informed and comfortable with this new process.

Give us a call today to experience the quality service and care that 180 Medical is ready to give you! You'll find a listening ear from a well-trained, compassionate specialist who can help you through the transition to self-cathing.
  


About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for almost 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.
 

Latest Intermittent Catheter Products: Introducing GentleCath

by Jessica March 27, 2014 10:56

Have you heard about GentleCath intermittent catheters? We here at 180 Medical are always excited to share the latest and greatest products and information with our customers, so chances are you may have already talked to one of our friendly specialists about this quality brand and even gotten to experience these quality products for yourself!

What are some features of GentleCath products?

GentleCath is manufactured by ConvaTec, a worldwide medical product company. They manufacture quality items such as ostomy supplies, wound care, continence care, and more.

The GentleCath catheters all have polished, rounded eyelets and soft rounded tips to help minimize friction and make the catheterization experience more comfortable from insertion to withdrawal.


The latex-free vinyl catheters also feature color-coded funnels to help you determine French size. For more on how to determine French size based on the catheter funnel colors, see our informative article on Catheter French Sizes.


Whatever your lifestyle, GentleCath may have just the right intermittent catheter for your needs.

Which products does 180 Medical carry?

180 Medical is proud to be a provider of GentleCath's entire product line, including:
  • 100% latex-free PVC (vinyl) straight intermittent catheters, available in 16" male length (ranging in French size from 8fr to 18fr) and 8" female length (French sizes of 8fr to 16fr)
  • 100% latex-free PVC (vinyl) coude tip intermittent catheters -- available in 16" male length (French sizes from 8fr to 18fr). Recently updated, back, and better than ever with improved eyelet placement on sides!
  • Red rubber intermittent catheters in both straight and coude tip -- 16" male length (straight tip comes in French sizes from 10fr to 20fr and the coude tip comes in 12fr to 20fr)
And coming soon, GentleCath will add a top-quality line of hydrophilic catheters and hydrophilic catheter kits to their brand. More information on that to come!

How can I try out GentleCath's products and find the catheter that's right for me?

Simply contact 180 Medical by filling out our online inquiry or give us a call at 1-877-688-2729 to speak to one of our highly trained, friendly specialists. We will be happy to help!
  

8 Commonly Asked Questions About Catheters

by Catheter Experts March 10, 2014 13:41
Urinary incontinence is unfortunately a common issue among many today. There are several men, women and children who are affected by it and their physical and social well-being are often impacted. Fortunately, with self-catheterization, you can safely and effectively control your bladder and reduce the likelihood of bladder and kidney infections.

If it's your first time self-catheterizing, to help you better understand catheters, how they work and the process, we've examined the eight most commonly asked questions about catheters, along with answers.

1. What exactly is a catheter?

A catheter is a small rubber or plastic tube that is placed in your bladder to drain your urine. Catheters are available in a number of different sizes, styles and materials. You will need to do some experimenting to determine which kind works best.

2. How does it work?

Self-catheterization only takes a few minutes and is rather easy. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, and you may use clean disposal gloves if you prefer. Lubricate the tube with a water-soluble lubricant and carefully insert it into the urethra. Once the tube reaches the bladder, the urine should begin flowing through the catheter naturally. When it stops flowing, slowly remove the catheter. If it's your first time, you may want to ask your doctor to show you how to use it. After some practice, it will get easier.

3. Why do I need one?

A catheter is necessary if your bladder cannot hold all of your urine or you cannot empty your bladder completely. The catheter helps to drain and empty your bladder.

4. How long does it take to empty my bladder with a catheter?

This will ultimately depend on the diameter of the catheter and how much urine you need to release. Typically, a few seconds to a minute is the average time.

5. How will I know if it has entered my bladder?

Typically, once the catheter has entered your bladder, urine should begin to flow out of the catheter, which will continue until your bladder is fully empty.

6. When can I remove it?

You can remove the catheter once the flow of urine has stopped.

7. How often can I use a catheter?

Usually catheters are used infrequently, but it is OK to use them more regularly. This will depend upon your individual health needs. You may want to speak to your doctor if you're unsure.

8. Are there complications involved in using a catheter?

You may feel a slight burning sensation after removing the catheter, but this will pass with time and use. The more practice you have in using a catheter, the more comfortable it will become. There may also be an increased risk of Urinary Tract Infections, as well. If you encounter any symptoms of a UTI such as consistent burning in the urethra, feeling an urge to urinate more frequently than usual, fever, or cloudy urine, consult your doctor. You can reduce the risk of UTIs by using your catheter one time only.


Please note that this is intended to provide a general understanding of urinary catheters. It should not be used in place of a visit, call, or consultation with a physician or other health care provider. Please let us know if you have any questions, we'd be happy to help.
   
 

Catheter French Sizes

by Jessica February 24, 2014 15:10
Determining the best size of intermittent catheter for you can greatly increase the efficiency and comfort of your self-catheterization routine. But how does one choose the right size?

French Sizes

All internal catheters are sized by a universal gauge system that is referred to as "French size(s)," which is based on the measure of the external diameter of the tube. The way the size is determined is a simple multiplication of 3 (diameter in millimeters times 3 = French size). So, if a catheter has a diameter of 4.7 millimeters, the French (Fr) size is 14.

Catheter Funnel Colors

Intermittent catheters with funnels use a universal color coding system to help you determine what French size a catheter is. See below chart for common universal French sizes and their corresponding funnel color codes.



Getting the Size Just Right for You

Why is determining the French size of your catheter so important?

  • Comfort is an important part of the catheterization process. If you are using a catheter with too large of a French size for your urethra, cathing can be more difficult and even painful. If it is far too large, you will not be able to insert it at all.
  • The overall pace of voiding your bladder can go slower if you use a French size that is smaller than normal.
  • When using a catheter that is smaller than your urethra, urine released from the bladder will not only escape through the catheter tube but also around it, which can get urine on your hands and elsewhere.

There are a wide range of sizes from pediatric to adult, and intermittent catheters also come in varying lengths: pediatric (typically around 10 inches), female (6-8 inches), and male/unisex (16 inches). This is to accommodate the different urethral lengths between genders.

To determine the best size for you, please consult with your doctor or healthcare professional so that you can get a quality experience with your intermittent catheters every time.

For more information, or if you have additional questions about products, feel free to call and consult with one of our trained specialists!


About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for almost 5 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, art, music, and spending time with friends and family.