Case: Cystostomy tube for temporary drainage of the bladder, by-passing the urethra
28th January 2015
A male cat had temporary difficulty urinating after mineral deposits obstructed the urethra, the tube that drains the bladder to the outside. A perineal urethrostomy was required (see separate article), but there was still difficulty urinating for the first few days. Presumably urethral swelling and inflamation needed time to settle down. To manage urination for the early post-op period, we placed a cystostomy tube. This was easily tolerated by the patient and allowed the bladder to be periodically drained, bypassing the urethra. In the long run, over months, chronic urinary infections would be likely to develop with these tubes. But for a couple of weeks they can be very useful. The tubes are placed through an open surgical approach if there is a need to inspect the bladder, or they can be placed blindly with the aid of a peel-away catheter. Once we’d finished with the tube, it is can easily be removed conscious.