People who use this type of catheter will often have an abnormal test and culture of urine from the bag. But even if the test is abnormal, you may not have a UTI. This fact makes it harder for your provider to choose whether to treat you.
If you also have symptoms of a UTI, your provider will likely treat you with antibiotics.
If you do not have symptoms, your provider must consider other factors when deciding whether to treat you.
However, because there is a risk that your infection may spread to your kidneys, antibiotics are almost always used to treat a UTI.
Most of the time, you can take antibiotics by mouth. It is very important to take all of them, even if you feel better before you finish them. If your infection is more severe, you may need to receive antibiotics through an intravenous (IV) line. You may also receive medicine to lessen bladder spasms.
You will need more fluids to help flush bacteria out of your bladder. If you are treating yourself at home, this may mean drinking 2 to 3 quarts (1.9 to 2.9 liters) of fluid a day. You should ask your provider how much fluid is safe for you. Avoid fluids that irritate your bladder, such as alcohol, citrus juices, and drinks that contain caffeine.
After you have finished your treatment, you will have another urine test. This test will make sure the germs are gone.
Your catheter will need to be changed when you have a UTI. If you have many UTIs, your provider may remove the catheter. The provider may also:
- Ask you to insert a urine catheter intermittently so you don't keep one in all the time
- Suggest other urine collection devices
- Suggest surgery so you do not need a catheter
- Use a special coated catheter that can reduce risk of infection
- Prescribe a low-dose antibiotic or other antibacterial for you to take every day
This can help prevent bacteria from growing in your catheter.