How to Cap Your Nephroureterostomy Catheter

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This information explains how to do a capping trial on your nephroureterostomy (NEH-froh-YER-eh-ter-OS-toh-mee) catheter.

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About Capping Trials

Your doctor may want you to do a capping trial on your nephroureterostomy catheter (see Figure 1). This is done to make sure the pathway between your kidney and your bladder is open.

Figure 1. Nephroureterostomy catheter

Figure 1. Nephroureterostomy catheter

Capping your catheter helps your urine (pee) travel down the catheter into your bladder.

 

Your nurse may cap your catheter for you while you’re in the hospital. You’ll need to do it yourself when you’re at home.

Before you cap your catheter, make sure your urine is clear yellow. You shouldn’t have any blood in your urine. If your urine isn’t clear yellow, call your healthcare provider’s office.

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How to Cap Your Catheter

  1. Gather your supplies. You’ll need:
    • An alcohol wipe
    • A needleless connector
  2. Disconnect the drainage tubing from your nephroureterostomy catheter (see Figure 2).
    Figure 2. Disconnecting the drainage tubing from your nephroureterostomy catheter

    Figure 2. Disconnecting the drainage tubing from your catheter

  3. Clean the end of your nephroureterostomy catheter with an alcohol wipe for 15 seconds (see Figure 3).
    Figure 3. Cleaning the end of your nephroureterostomy catheter

    Figure 3. Cleaning the end of your catheter

  4. Connect the needleless connector to the end of your nephroureterostomy catheter (see Figure 4).
    Figure 4. Connecting the needleless connector to your nephroureterostomy catheter

    Figure 4. Connecting the needleless connector to your catheter

Remember to change the needleless connector every 7 days or when it gets dirty.

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While Your Catheter Is Capped

If you have a capped nephroureterostomy catheter, you need to watch out for these symptoms:

  • Leaking around your catheter insertion site
  • A temperature higher than 100.4 °F (38 °C) or chills
  • Pain, often above your hip, in your lower back, or around your catheter insertion site
  • You’re not able to urinate (pee) within 8 hours after you’ve capped your catheter

These symptoms can happen any time after your catheter has been capped. If you have any of these symptoms, call Interventional Radiology to let us know. Then, uncap your catheter. To do this, remove the needleless connector from your catheter. Clean your catheter with an alcohol wipe for 15 seconds and reconnect it to a new drainage bag. Your symptoms should get better within 30 to 45 minutes. If they don’t, call Interventional Radiology for instructions on what to do next.

Don’t recap your catheter without calling Interventional Radiology first.

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Contact Information

If you have any questions or concerns, call your doctor in Interventional Radiology. You can reach them Monday through Friday, from to If it’s after , a weekend, or a holiday, call 212-639-2000. Ask to speak to the Interventional Radiology fellow on call.

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