CAUTI, What's The Answer?

CAUTI is the term given to a catheter associated urinary tract infection. While the UTI (urinary tract infection) is well known in and out of medical circles and is well documented,  even though it accounts for the 56% to 86% of all the UTIs that happen in acute-care hospitals in the U.S. each year, still has not been until recently researched extensively in order to increase patient care and reduce costs for this very specific cause of urinary tract infection. However, because of recent policy changes from Medicare relating to redress for hospital acquired infections, the medical industry is now taking a real interest in the prevention of CAUTI and it's associated risks.

 How Do CAUTIs Happen?

CAUTIs happen because of the way catheterization takes place, which is very invasive. Catheterization is when a small flexible tube is placed into the urethra, or in the case of a suprapubic catheter, it is placed through an incision just above the pelvic bone and passes through into the bladder. This catheterization process opens up the body to infection. The device itself, the catheter, becomes a means for bacteria known as “bacteriuria” to pass into the urine though the lumens, i.e. the flexible tube, causing infection in the urinary tract. The general rule is that the longer the indwelling catheter stays in the body, the higher the associated risk a patient has of contracting a CAUTI.

The Surge In Recent Interest

Treatment costs resulting from the causes attributed to CAUTI have been estimated at up to $0.5 billion annually.

In 2008, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid implemented the “Hospital Acquired Conditions Initiative”, which effectively stopped redress for the treatment of HAIs (hospital acquired infections) such as CAUTI . This has resulted in a surge of interest for reducing the effects of catheter associated urinary tract infections due to hospitals also being unable, as part of the updated policy, to pass the additional costs onto the patient. This has had massive implications as to how hospitals now deal with CAUTI.

How Do You Reduce The Infection Rate?

The industry as a whole, along with the Center for Disease Control, decided to focus on increasing the standards set in place in hospitals. A study from 2009 by the Center for Disease Control suggests that a reduction in the use of catheters from cases where they were deemed non essential, was a great help in reducing the onset of a catheter associated urinary tract infection and gave the best results. In addition to this, trained professionals who used sterile equipment and maintained a closed drainage system, which allowed an unobstructed urine flow, also contributed to the reduction in the onset of a catheter associated urinary tract infection.

The problem with the best practices as the only solution is that there is only so far you can go when it comes to optimizing work habits in hospitals as a way to address the risks of catheterization related infections. Once the optimum standards have been reached, you are still going to have massive problems because you have not addressed the underlining cause of the infection, which is from the Foley catheter that is doing the damage to the bladder. It would be fair to say that although best practices in hospitals are absolutely essential, it should be considered to be just one part of an overall strategy when it comes to preventing the onset of Catheter associated urinary tract infections .

Another report put forward by Saint et al, studies the use of external catheters, known as condom catheters, to further prevent CAUTI. Initial studies were positive, however from 4,241 patients screened, 4,144 didn't actually qualify. In most cases this was because of a history of urinary retention and unfortunately, that means this isn't a viable option for many patients needing a catheter.

The logical step would be to go back to what is causing the damage i.e. the indwelling catheter. From a catheter design point of view, traditionally the focus has been on improving the materials used and using anti-bacterial coatings to curb the amount of bacteriuria that enters into the bladder. This has largely been ineffective and the industry has been in great need of a fresh look at the root cause of what is responsible for the high level of infection rates i.e. the Foley catheter design.

Here at Poiesis Medical, that is exactly what we have done. We believe that we have the next step in Foley catheter design that has been needed for generations. For the fist time in over 75 years, a much less invasive device with dual balloon technology shows in studies that there is significant trauma reduction to the bladder wall when using the Duette™ catheter. This in return, maintains the layer of Mucin (GAG), believed to provide an important barrier against any foreign bacterium entering the bladder due to catheterization. This is believed to be a very important step in the ongoing battle of reducing the amount of cases worldwide. However, reducing the onset of CAUTI isn't the only benefit this revolutionary product seeks to improve. The following are some of the other symptom improvements observed through our clinical studies.

Chronic irritation of the bladder and bladder spasms.


Drainage and urine blocking issues.

Blood in the urine.

Patient discomfort during catheterization .

Perforation and/or penetration of the bladder wall.

Not only does the Duette™ design allow great improvement on the trauma rates exhibited by the traditional Foley catheter, but also the potential in allowing the bladder wall to heal from previous catheterizations with no loss in performance.

As the landscape changes for the way hospitals deal with catheter related urinary tract infections, it is now not enough to just implement “best practices” for healthcare staff, but to consider that as only one part of the solution for reducing the onset of CAUTI. This is especially the case when it is known that the Foley catheters being used have shown in statistics that they will infect a percentage of patients due to their invasive nature and trauma causing design. It is time to re-evaluate the design of the standard Foley catheter and the Duette™ catheter has done just that. The Duette™ is just another part of the solution for when it comes to preventing CAUTI.

If you would like to find out more about the Duette™ dual balloon catheter, please visit our website or contact us toll free at +1 877.487.5740.

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