Urinary catheters are used routinely in the postoperative care of urogynecology patients after surgery involving the genitourinary tract. However, Urinary tract infections(UTI) associated with indwelling catheter is the second leading cause of nosocomial infections. 20% of hospital acquired bacteremia arise from UTI with an associated mortality of 10%.
There are many different types of catheters available for use. Standard indwelling catheters are made from a variety of materials including polyvinyl chlorine, plastic, plain latex, polytetrafluoroethylene, silicone elastomer, pure silicone hydrogel and polymer hydromer. Specialized catheters have been developed with the aim of reducing infection. Strategies generally involved coating the inner, outer or both surfaces of the catheter with antimicrobial materials. These materials can be antibiotic or antiseptic with the most common antiseptic material used being silver. Silver ions are bactericidal, are used safely when applied topically to humans and used in controlling infections.
Previous studies comparing UTI rates in transurethral catheters have reported a significant reduction of UTI rate in silver-alloy catheters with a range of 5-12% compared to standard catheters with a range of 7-50%. There are no studies comparing the UTI rate in silver-alloy supra-pubic catheters to standard supra-pubic catheters. The investigators hypothesize that this study will show a statistically significant decrease in UTI rate among the individuals with a silver-alloy suprapubic catheter compared to the standard silver-alloy catheter.