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Thread: Foley and bladder spasms

  1. #1

    Foley and bladder spasms

    I have been using a foley for the past 15 years and, up to the past year or two, haven't had any issues. I take Detrol LA once nightly.

    For the most part, I don't have any recurring issues until I go to change to foley. Its at this time that I have extreme bladder spams that can cause AD for up to an hour (not the whole time, just recurring). This often occurs many hours after it has been changed and is really ruling my life for the entire day.

    This is the part that puzzles me: Why are the spams occurring many hours after it has been changed?

    I generally experience some general AD and spasticity for about 30 mins after it has been changed and then I am fine for a few hours; then it hits me like a ton of bricks!

    I have been taking Tylenol to try and reduce the possible pain my bladder is experiencing and controlling my AD with Minipress, if necessary, but nothing but time seems to help. After an hour or so, everything is fine and I'm on my way.

    Just in case the information is pertinent, I change it every 30 days or so.


    C5-6 - 22 years

  2. #2
    Hi "Ben,"
    I now have a supra pubic catheter (SP), but used an indwelling, urethral foley for some time before the SP. It seems to me that problems like this that start after many years of using a particular type of bladder management fall into the category of neurogenic bladder change. Change just happens and things don't work they way the used to. I would suggest seeing your urologist for a cystoscopy to get a good look at the bladder and the urethra. You may be developing some urethral erosion or strictures. The spasms are being caused from some kind of irritation.

    Irritation can occur when you withdraw the catheter after you have deflated the balloon. The balloon never deflates tightly and compactly so there is always the possibility of irritation from withdrawing the catheter. When you are inserting the catheter, you may need more lubricant than you are used to using. You may have to insert the catheter more slowly. When you inflate the balloon with sterile water or saline, try under filling it by a couple of cc. What kind of catheter are you using, latex? silicone? Maybe you need to change the type, brand of catheter, and or size of the catheter. You may want to take more Detrol LA when you plan to change the catheter.

    There are many possibilities. It may just be a matter of problem solving and trouble shooting for a while to see what works better for you. Hope you find some relief soon.

    All the best,

  3. #3
    I used a foley for 10 years and experienced similiar issues after a foley change. Recently, I switched to an SP and wish I did it 10 years ago.

  4. #4
    Thanks for the replies everyone. I changed it this morning and suffered the worst AD I have had in quite a few years for about two hours. Immediately made an appointment to go see my urologist on Wednesday.

    Rusty, can you elaborate on the differences you have had with the SP? Better/Worse?


    C5-6 - 22 years

  5. #5

    I've never had a bladder spasm since I had it done, even after it was changed. I was changing the foley about once a week because of clogging. I just had the SP changed after 5 weeks and it was still flowing good. The foley and SP were/are 16fr. It's also nice to not having a tube hanging out of my dingus.

  6. #6
    Ask your urologist about a sp tube. There are many pro's and con's to them and there are a ton of postings on here. Search for them using the term Suprapubic Tube.

    It could be exactly as GJ says - sometimes little things change that lead to bigger problems. If you decide to stick with a foley, you might try asking your urologist to prescribe procardia prophylactically to decrease your ad symproms. Also, have you tried using a lidocaine jelly to decrease the stimulation of putting the foley in?

    Anything else change that you can think of?


  7. #7
    Thanks again for the replies. I haven't tried any type of Lidocaine, but I will surely ask.

    The only thing I changed with my routine was the type of water I drink before I change it. I have always drank 16-32 ounces of bottled water (our town's water makes me sick) 15 minutes before changing the foley, but we ran out of bottled water so I drank Fruit2O flavored water instead.

    As soon as he foley was inserted I begin voiding as usual, but my AD was worse than it has ever been at that time and within 5 mins I stopped voiding altogether.

    This is when things really went south. Sweating, head and the back of my neck began pounding. I knew I was in trouble. It lasted for about 20 mins until I began draining again and continued to diminish for about another 1.5 hours.

    After researching it more, I am thinking the high level of citric acid in my bladder from 4 Fruit2Os may have been the culprit.

    Has anyone ever had similar bladder irritation like this?

    Thanks for the help!

    C5-6 - 22 years

  8. #8

    I think your problem might be from slamming down that much liquid so fast before changing the foley. The same after you change it, drink but not too much in a short time span.

  9. #9
    That's a lot of fluid for your bladder to handle at one time. Try drinking it over a longer period of time... I am not sure the citric acid could cause the problem, but I am certainly open to it as a possibility.

    If this continues, PLEASE call your physician. There are things that can be done to decrease the ad and it is dangerous.


  10. #10
    Going in for a CT w/stone protocol and a Cystoscopy on my bladder on Thursday. Has any had the scope done?

    Just curious as to what to expect. Doc said I could go home right after the test as long as my AD was ok.
    C5-6 - 22 years

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