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Urology/hypotonic urinary bladder and alcohol consumption


respected doctor,

i am suffering from hypotonic urinary bladder as a consequence of long term symptomless BOO, over stretched bladder and underwent two BNIs and TURP without any improvement. On CISC 5times a day now. bladder is having some contractions allowing me to void about 200ml when the bladder is full (450-500ml). one urosepsis in past two years requiring I/v Antibiotics . my doubts are.

1) My profession demands frequent touring. Public toilets are very unhygienic. iam quite scared of cathing in such enverons fearing resistant infections. Can infections be acquired by cathing in such settings ?Is it advisable.

2) can i consume alcohol twice or thrice  a month @ 200-220ml each time  (possibly it is the best option for me to relax).is there any harm in doing so? is this habbit going to damage  residual contractions of bladder.

Gopalaro, in the technique of self catheterization that I recommend, one can either use "clean" or "sterile" catheters.  With the clean catheter technique, the catheters are re-used after washing your hands and then the catheter with soap and water.  Once a week I suggest sterilizing the catheter either in boiling water or by the microwave technique (see reference at the end of this note). They are then placed in a clean plastic zip lock bag which you carry with you.  I also recommend carrying a small kit with you that contains sterile water soluble lubricant (such as packs of Surgilube or Lubrifax) and antiseptic packets (such as alcohol or Betadine).  Before catheterization, your hands should be washed with soap and water.  If no clean facilities are available for this, carry either a hand sanitizer such as Purell) or use an alcohol wipe to clean them.  The tip of the penis is wiped with the antiseptic, the clean catheter tip is then greased with the lubricant and the catheter is passed into the bladder.  This can be done standing.  If one prefers to sit on the toilet for the catheterization, for most individuals, it works best if one faces the back of the toilet.  

Sterile catheters can be purchased in bulk for a relatively small price.  The technique is the same except these catheters are disposable after use.  For your situation when traveling to remote areas, this may be best for you.  The risk of infection from poorly hygienic bathrooms could be increased by using clean catheters but I don't think it would by using sterile catheters.  

As far as drinking alcohol 2-3 times a month is concerned, I do not believe this will adversely affect your bladder condition.  However, the amount you consume on these occasions is around 7 shots (30 ml each).  Over time, this could potentially affect your liver adversely.  I would suggest you perhaps cut the amount in half.

Technique to sterilize catheters for re-use:

Good luck.


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Arthur Goldstein, M.D.


Problems or questions related to the field of urology; ie urinary stone disease, urinary cancers (kidney, bladder, prostate, testis, etc.), urinary infections, etc. I no longer answer questions related to erection problems or male sexual dysfunction.


I am retired from the active practice of urology. My 34 years was totally in the clinical field and involved the entire gamut of genitourinary problems, with special interest in endourology.

American Medical Association, American Urological Association, American College of Surgeons

College degree - BS Medical degree - MD Master of Science - MS

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