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An update on prevention and treatment of catheter-associated urinary tract infections

Tenke, Petera; Köves, Bélaa; Johansen, Truls E.B.b

Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases: February 2014 - Volume 27 - Issue 1 - p 102–107
doi: 10.1097/QCO.0000000000000031
URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS: Edited by Suzanne E. Geerlings

Purpose of review Catheter-related urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most important nosocomial infections. This review summarizes the latest advances in the field of catheter care and the management of catheter-associated UTIs.

Recent findings The most efficient methods to prevent catheter-associated UTIs are to avoid unnecessary catheterizations and to remove catheters as soon as possible. The use of different reminder systems and implementation of infection control programs can effectively decrease catheter-associated UTIs, although their introduction can be challenging. There is still no evidence to support the routine use of antimicrobial-impregnated catheters, but the use of hydrophilic-coated catheters for clean intermittent catheterization can effectively reduce infections. Preliminary results with chlorhexidine-coated catheters are promising. In cases of serious catheter-associated UTI in patients with a history of previous antibiotic therapy or healthcare-associated bacteraemia, empirical antibiotic treatment should be initiated with activity against multiresistant uropathogens. Suprapubic catheterization is not superior to urethral catheters in terms of reducing the rate of catheter-related bacteriuria.

Summary A technology to prevent catheter-associated UTIs is still not available; however, there are promising results with new approaches such as the use of reminder systems and infection control programs, which can effectively decrease the rate of catheter-associated UTIs. There is evidence supporting the use of hydrophilic coated catheters for clean intermittent catheterization, but an optimal catheter material or coating still has to be developed. Evidence-based catheter management is crucial for every patient in need of a catheter.

aDepartment of Urology, South-Pest Hospital, Budapest, Hungary

bDepartment of Urology, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway

Correspondence to Peter Tenke, Department of Urology, South-Pest Hospital, Köves Str.1, 1204, Budapest, Hungary. Tel: +3612396200; e-mail:

© 2014 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.