A-Z

Jack

Age at interview: 77
Brief Outline: Jack broke his hip in 2011, aged 76. When he went into hospital, a urethral catheter was inserted. Jack was wondering whether to have surgery to his prostate, which would enable him to be catheter free, but having surgery could also cause complications.
Background: Jack is a retired county court clerk and is single. Ethnic background / nationality: White British.

More about me...

Jack broke his hip in May 2011 at the age of 76. When he went into hospital a urethral catheter was inserted. After a couple of weeks, the catheter was taken out. At night, however, Jack found it difficult to urinate. The doctor re-inserted the catheter and, when Jack was discharged from hospital, he still had the catheter in. He went into intermediate care for 4 weeks and then returned to hospital to have the catheter removed. Because he hadn’t passed very much urine, the nurse put the catheter back in. 
 
At the time of interview, Jack was wondering whether to have surgery to his prostate, which would enable him to be catheter free, but was aware that the operation could also cause complications. He’d been living with the catheter but had had problems with it. He has had to have it changed frequently because of blockages. He said he can have the catheter in for a maximum of 4 weeks before it needs changing. He would be happier to keep the catheter permanently if it could be changed every 12 weeks instead. Other problems he’d had with the catheter have included leakage when the bag has come away from the catheter. 
 
Jack said he lived with several other health problems too, including high cholesterol, arthritis and depression. On a day-to-day basis, he had help from a carer who came in in the mornings to help get him out of bed and washed, and who prepared his breakfast. She also emptied his catheter bag and put a new one on. Jack emptied his bag himself every 3 or 4 hours. He said he tries to go out but still has difficulty walking.   
 
Jack was given very little information about the catheter – he only learnt he had one inserted when he came round after surgery. At the time of interview, he felt undecided about whether to keep the catheter or have surgery to his prostate. He said that the doctor had told him it was rare for people to have the surgery, and he wondered how many other patients had gone ahead with the operation. 
 

 

 

Jack is unsure whether to have surgery or live with a urethral catheter. He has had problems with...

Jack is unsure whether to have surgery or live with a urethral catheter. He has had problems with...

SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT
Unfortunately, I’ve had problems since [having the catheter] in that I’ve had to have it changed often. It has become blocked, so I’ve had to ring for a nurse to come and change the catheter. And that has happened, was happening quite frequently. It happened at Christmas time, two weeks later. And I’ve gone now for four weeks bar a day, had it changed on Sunday, that was a day short of four weeks. Now the lady who’s keeping a check on this, she’ll ring me again this week. She might ring me today. She reckoned four weeks has been a reasonable time, but I don’t think it is a reasonable time.
 
So I’m undecided now whether or not to have the operation. You see I have difficulties in that, sometimes, if I’m not careful I don’t plug the night bag in right. Then of course it leaks then and there have even been night bags that have been faulty.
 
I had one that was not screwed in properly and that leaked. I had one that had not been closed properly and that leaked. Then I’ve had a connection from a day bag, the connection had come out. I’ve had to put it in myself.
 
Yes. Has that always been while you’ve been at home?
 
Yes. I’ve been at home since, about the end of July, beginning of August. And so, at the moment, I’m undecided what to do because of the worry about it.

 

 

Jack’s night bag leaks if it comes apart from his catheter. He’s also had problems with the day...

Jack’s night bag leaks if it comes apart from his catheter. He’s also had problems with the day...

SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT
The nurse weighed my urine and she said I’d not passed enough, so she put a catheter back in. I went back to the hospital then, I don’t know how many weeks later, and the nurse there was happy enough for me to leave the catheter in. But I suggested to the doctor that I should have the operation to have it removed. It would be a prostate operation.
 
So I went back to the hospital and I was examined thoroughly and the nurse said it would be a difficult thing because I would lose a lot of blood. I had to have blood transfusions when I had my hip done. And also I would have difficulty then in holding water. I would need to go the toilet often.
 
So, instead of having difficulty passing water, I would have difficulty holding water. And there was a question, I had a heart murmur, not too serious, just a heart murmur. Anyway, we were going to go ahead with the operation and they rang me to go back in and see the anaesthetist. 
 
And in between time, I’d been put off and I’d decided not to have the operation. The doctor in fact, when I saw the doctor and asked him if I could have the operation, he was quite surprised because a lot of people won’t have the operation. So I put it off, and decided to live with it. Unfortunately, I’ve had problems since in that I’ve had to have it [the catheter] changed often.
 
So I’m undecided now whether or not to have the operation. You see I have difficulties in that, sometimes, if I’m not careful, I don’t plug the night bag in right. Then of course it leaks then, and there have even been night bags that have been faulty. 
 
I had one that were not screwed in properly and that leaked. I had one that had not been closed properly and that leaked. Then I’ve had a connection from a day bag, the connection had come out. I’ve had to put it in myself.
 
Yes. Has that always been while you’ve been at home? 
 
Yeah. Yes. I’ve been at home since about the end of July, beginning of August. And so, at the moment, I’m undecided what to do because of the worry about it. 

 

 

Jack would like to know how often a catheter should be changed. He would opt for a permanent one...

Jack would like to know how often a catheter should be changed. He would opt for a permanent one...

SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT
Have you had any questions that you’ve wanted to ask them [health professionals]? 
 
Well I ask them every time how long the catheter is supposed to last, see I was told originally it would have to be changed every twelve weeks and it never lasts for twelve weeks. 
 
And the nurse, whichever nurse comes, says that they don’t last for twelve weeks. But I don’t know now how long it does last for. And the lady connected with the nurses is keeping a check on it. And she mentioned four weeks, which, is four weeks fair enough? I just don’t know. So I’ll have to discuss this with her. 
 
Would you be happier with having, keeping the catheter permanently if it was changed every twelve weeks? 
 
Yes. If it lasted for twelve weeks, that would be fine. 

 

Previous Page
Next Page