1. Wash your hands

Wash your hands with soap and water for at least one minute. Your hands may spread germs. You may use baby wipes if you do not have soap and water. Do not skip CIC if you do not have water.

2. Gather all the needed supplies

Catheter: You will be given a prescription for catheters. You can get catheters from a medical supply company. Check the catheter for breakdown, cracks, or damage. Do not use a catheter that has been damaged or worn.

Lubricating jelly: You will be given a prescription for lubricating jelly. Look for the words water soluble on the label. Do not use Vaseline® or petroleum jelly.

Cotton balls or washcloth: These need to be clean, but do not need to be sterile.

Mild soap or baby wipes: The best baby wipes for CIC have benzalkonium chloride. Check the wipes package for this ingredient.

Urine container: A container big enough to hold the urine if you need to measure the amount of urine drained. You can drain the urine into a diaper or toilet if you do not need to measure it.

3. Position

Girls can do CIC in a couple of positions. You or your child may want to use a mirror to see and help with CIC. Use the way that works best for you and your child.

  •   Lying down on a bed or table with knees bent and apart and feet together
  •   Sitting on the toilet or chair with knees apart

4. Put lubricating jelly on the tip of the catheter

CIC wash the girl's private area5.Wash the private area

Wash and rinse the private area three times. Use a clean, soapy washcloth or cotton ball, or wet wipes. Wash downward from front to back only. Make sure all the soap is gone.

  •   If using a cotton ball, use a new one each time.
  •   If using a washcloth, use a new part of the cloth each time.
  •   If using wipes, tear the wipe into three pieces and use a new piece each time.

CIC put in the catheter in a girl patient6. Put in the catheter

Pick up the lubricated catheter. Hold it two to three inches from the tip. With your other hand, spread the labia. Find the vagina. The urethra is a small hole above the vagina. Gently put the catheter into the urethra until urine starts to come out. You do not need to insert the catheter any farther once urine starts to come out. It will not do harm if the catheter is inserted a little farther. Hold onto the catheter so it does not fall out.

Use a new catheter if it goes into the vagina instead of the urethra, and try again. The vagina has bacteria and yeast that will cause an infection if the catheter is taken out of the vagina and put into the urethra.

Tips to help put in the catheter

  •   Use gentle but firm pressure.
  •   Have your child take slow, deep breaths or blow on a pinwheel or bubbles.
  •   Do not force the catheter.

Tips to help the urine drain

  •   Have your child cough.
  •   Turn the catheter.
  •   Have your child change position.

7. Take out the catheter

When urine stops draining, slowly pull out the catheter. Stop pulling out the catheter if urine starts to drain again. Do this until the catheter is out. Dry off the private area.

8. Throw away the catheter and clean up

We recommend you only use your catheter one time.

  1. Throw away the catheter.
  2. Wash your hands and other catheter supplies with soap and water for one minute.
  3. Rinse the supplies well.
  4. Pat and air dry the supplies well. You may also use a blow (hair) dryer on a cool/warm setting to dry the supplies. Wet or damp supplies can grow germs.

Due to your insurance coverage, you may need to wash and reuse your catheter. If you have been taught to reuse your catheter:

  • Wash your hands, the catheter, and catheter supplies with soap and water for one minute.
  • Rinse the catheter and supplies well.
  • Dry the catheter and supplies well. You may use a blow (hair) dryer on a cool/warm setting to dry the catheter and supplies. A wet or damp catheter and supplies can grow germs.

More tips

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for one 1 minute.
  • Keep your supplies clean. Wash the catheter with soap and water after each CIC if you need to reuse it. The catheters must dry between uses.
  • Use a plastic baggie or cosmetics bag to carry your supplies. Carry waterless soap in the bag.
  • If anyone helps your child, they should wear gloves.
  • Always take one or two extra catheters for emergency use.
  • Order supplies before you run out.