How long can you have foley catheter in waiting for Aquablation?

Posted , 4 users are following.

I had Urinary retention on 4/16 and taken by ambulance to ER. Foley catheter was inserted. Was prescribed Flow Max. On 5/1 I did a void test and flunked. In excruciating pain 40 min drive to the Hospital. Catheter put back in.

I'm 65 and medicare kicked in by the way.

On 5/10 appt with my urologist recommended TURP or HoLEP. I had asked him about Aquablation and he say's Kaiser don't do Aquablation. In my research I found they started doing it in the Mid-Atlantic , Maryland. But not here in Ca, YET! Well after deciding on HoLEP I've become depressed over this situation. My Urologist was to schedule surgery 2 months from the time we talked .

So I decided to read a lot of good information here on other forums. Guys having the same problem with insurance and going elsewhere. I did the same , got the ball rolling and Kaiser so far is permitting me to look and giving me a referral outside Kaiser. Found Urologist Dr Comiter out of Stanford Urologists . Palo Alto , ca.

What I'm concerned about is now I've had this catheter on for one month. Dr Comiter office told me my consultation can be scheduled for Sept. Thats another 3 1/2 months away. Is this safe or possible without infection , Sepsis, or any other complications.

Thanks to information posted here I've asked that they put me on the cancellation list to get in sooner.

To top things off my wife had a stroke back in Nov. I'm her caregiver and had been working my but off helping her rehab. She's come a long way and doing fine. Proud of her!! My driving force to get back to normal and help her continued progress.

So what do you guys think? Anyone been in the same situation? Will I be ok waiting that long?

Thank you in advance. Mike

0 likes, 11 replies

Report / Delete

11 Replies

  • Edited

    Mike, sorry to hear about your condition. You are not alone. I too had urinary retention and a catheter for a month, before undergoing Uro-lift in 2019. That was only a temporary fix. I started noticing a reduction in my urinary stream in 2022 and had successful Aquablation surgery done in February of this year. It was the best decision I could have made.

    My prostate was not very large, approx. 50 mg, but I had a significant median lobe, acting as a ball valve pushing up into my bladder. The procedure took 45 minutes. One bag of saline was run for irrigation and I was discharged with a catheter. The next day the cath was removed. Within 24 hours I was able to urinate as well as when I was in my 20s. BTW, am 59 yo.

    As long as you keep you catheter clean you should not get an infection. Having a cath for a few months shouldn't cause any log term harm, but your muscles may be weak after your have the procedure and you may experience some leakage. I experienced no leakage or dripping after my Aquablation. No sexual side effects either.

    I had my surgery done in Austin, TX, which is where I live. The practice is Urology Austin. They have done more Aquablation procedures than any other practice in the country. If you are willing to travel, I would highly recommend their practice. There are 5 surgeons who perform the procedure, and all are superb. My surgeon is a woman who is the best urologist I have ever had. I've had prostate problems for nearly 40 years. I feel better now than I have since my 20s.

    Glad to hear your wife is improving. I wish you and her the best. Good luck.


    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Thanks Chris

      Still trying to get insurance squared away. I'm a Kaiser member. My Urologist has been out for the last 7 days. I was told that he would be able to refer me outside to Stanford Urology but just found out today that he won't or cant. He says he cant. So 7 days wasted now juggling insurance to get outside procedure.

      Very frustrated.

      How are you doing now? Still strong flow?


      Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      Mike -

      Yes, I am doing well. Everything is normal. Strong flow, no urgency, no side effects. I think the key for me was not waiting too long to have the aquablation performed. Wish I could have done it instead of UroLift originally.

      I hate insurance companies. Most docs do, too. I hope you can get to see a uro that can help you with aquablation.

      There was a guy in the hospital the day of my procedure, who was from Germany. My doctor said to him, "People usually visit Texas for the BBQ". She performed his aquablation, too.

      I hope you have success with getting treated. It will be worth the wait. I would do it again in a second.


      Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      If your insurance carrier, Kaiser, has a case management department, ask to talk to a case manager. Usually a nurse and plead your case. Nurses are compassionate to help you get what you need. Don't let up on the insurance company. Also, if you are employed, it makes sense to contact your company and talk to them about your healthcare benefits. Your employer negotiates with the insurance companies for your benefits. They usually have someone in that department that can be an advocate for you. Hopes this helps.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      Yes, local member services just called and it's going through grievance operations request. I will be assigned a case manager. I will be receiving an acknowledgment letter. Than after that a resolution. All takes about 30 days. The Stanford Urologist who does the procedure has me down for an Oct consultation . Geez. I'm on the cancellation list and they said they do get cancellations often enough to get me in sooner. In the mean time I'm looking for another dr in the area that does Aquablation.

      You have been a lot of help Steve. Thank you so much.

      Report / Delete Reply
  • Edited

    Wow Michael...sorry to hear about you and your wife. Glad she is on the road to recovery.

    I have had a catheter in since March 30 and am scheduled to have Aquablation on June 5. It will be 7weeks of the catheter in place but I did not want to risk another infection. The main risk of infection is with the catheter being removed and replaced on a continuum.

    Read below...(Also, soap and water is all that you need to clean yourself with around the catheter. Do not use peroxide or any alcohol wipes. It ruins the material that the catheter is made of.)

    It took a month to get an appointment (April 21) with the Dr. that does Aquablation in our area.

    That being said....we removed the catheter 3X's. Each time I urinated for 6hours and then my urethra closed up d/t enlarged prostate (182cc's) and I had to have the foley back in. I ended up with two infections d/t the urology group not using an aseptic technique for one catheter insertion and the other for the transrectal prostate biopsy.

    BTW: For anyone getting biopsies, There is a transperineal biopsy that has less risk of infection because the surgeons are not going through the rectum to do the biopsies.

    Hang in there and keep us posted on your progress. I am two weeks away from this procedure and anxiously awaiting for this to be over with so I can go back to my normal schedule of urinating and sexual relations with my wife.

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hey Steve

      Thanks for the tips on hygiene . I was scared to get this catheter wet so I got a 50g garbage bag and cut two holes in the bottom corners to put my feet through and tightened the loop straps around my waist. Kept my catheter form getting soaked. Then used baby wipes to clean all the rest after getting out of the shower. It worked great!! But guess I didn't need to do all that. Took my first shower without the garbage bag technique and all went well.

      My catheter straps on my thigh would always fall pulling on tube...ouch. So I taped them. But this last time I used a different tape made of rubber/latex and after a few days felt a burning on my skin. Well I have some pretty good size blisters where the tape was. Dang!! Removed the tape and feels much better. Now dealing with blisters to heal.

      I'm 65 BTW. I've had this catheter on since 4/16 6 weeks now. Still waiting for referral to outside Urologist that does Aquablation. Dr Comiter at Stanford Hospital Palo Alto, California. US

      My Urologist was out 7 days and no one else was able to refer. Then when he gets back he says my primary Dr needs to be the one to refer. I'm getting real frustrated to say the least.

      I have been very active. Always outdoors, running, working out, golfing, fishing and spending time with the grandkids . In fact they are coming up in two weeks to swim in our pool and have a great time. That's the tough part. They loved horsing around with grandpa. My wife had a stroke Nov 3rd so shes on the mend too. She's doing real well. Only a slight limp but we will get her back to normal with hard work. The pool is great resistance therapy. So yeah my hands are full and dealing with getting the ok for Aquablation. My primary Dr just put a referral in and thinks it's going to get denied. So next recourse is appeal or switch insurance. Great !!

      Steve great to hear you are doing well and back to normal and being intimate again. That's a big thing with my wife and I too. Keep up the great work and keep us posted.

      One more thing I can't stand when my Urologist says well Aquablation is a new treatment and not too much data to compare to other procedures. If he was only here reading the guys who have went through it.

      Thanks Mike

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      Michael. Use a bungee cord and wrap it around the catheter near the top -not too tight. It holds the catheter bag around your leg and you don't have to use tape.

      Google Aquablation research. They compare it to TURP's which is the gold standard, I believe (after reading the research) that Aquablation will be the gold standard as more information and research comes out.

      Also, Medicare started paying for this procedure in 2019. Medicare only pays for surgeries and procedures that are proven and cost effective. My doctor didn't even offer this to me. I did all the research on the internet.

      This technology as been in the making since approx. 2007.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      Another thought on getting approval. Read all the research and have copies of it to send and show the case manager at Kaiser that this is an approved therapy by Medicare and the research is compared to TURP's. Kaiser should not be denying this procedure especially since you have a catheter and cannot urinate and you are of Medicare age. All Medicare plans have to provide the same level of care that Medicare covers.

      Also, call the reimbursement department at Procept-Aquablation (650-232-7200) and see what they can do to help and guide you through the process of getting your procedure approved.

      Also, I have been wearing a foley catheter with the leg bag. The best one that I have found is the Hollister 9805 leg bag and Hollister 9343 straps. (The bag does not come with the straps, need to order separately). I have had no problems with this one. The hospitals and some offices use a Medline leg bag and it is horrible bc it is flimsy and the straps are useless. Check into the Hollister is on Amazon. It is definitely worth it.

      Report / Delete Reply

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up