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Catheter-associated Urinary Tract Infection (CAUTI)
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Catheter-associated Urinary Tract Infection (CAUTI) in the Perioperative Setting s Alayne D . Markland, DO, MSc University of Alabama at Birmingham. AGS. THE AMERICAN GERIATRICS SOCIETY Geriatrics Health Professionals. Leading change. Improving care for older adults. Outline. Background

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The american geriatrics society geriatrics health professionals

Catheter-associated Urinary Tract Infection (CAUTI)in the Perioperative SettingsAlayne D. Markland, DO, MScUniversity of Alabama at Birmingham



Geriatrics Health Professionals.

Leading change. Improving care for older adults.



  • Background

    • Impact

    • Pathogenesis

    • Epidemiology

  • Prevention strategies

    • Core

    • Supplemental

Background impact of cauti

Background: Impact of CAUTI

  • Most common type of healthcare-associated infection

    • >30% of healthcare-associated infections reported

    • Estimated >560,000 nosocomial UTIs annually

  • Increased morbidity & mortality

    • Estimated 13,000 attributable deaths annually

    • Leading cause of secondary sepsis with ~10% mortality

  • Excess length of stay: 24 days

  • Increased cost: $0.4billion0.5 billion per year nationally

  • Unnecessary antimicrobial use

Background urinary catheter use

Background:Urinary Catheter Use

  • 15%25% of hospitalized patients

  • 5%10% of nursing home residents

  • Often placed for inappropriate indications

  • Physicians frequently unaware

  • In a recent survey of US hospitals:

    • >50% did not monitor which patients catheterized

    • 75% did not monitor duration and/or discontinuation

Background pathogenesis of cauti

Background:Pathogenesis of CAUTI

Source of microorganisms may be endogenous (meatal, rectal, or vaginal colonization) or exogenous, usually via contaminated hands of healthcare personnel during catheter insertion or manipulation of the collecting system

Figure from Maki DG, Tambyah PA. Emerg Infect Dis. 2001;7:1-6.

Background pathogenesis of cauti1


  • Formation of biofilms by urinary pathogens is common on the surfaces of catheters and collecting systems

  • Bacteria within biofilms are resistant to antimicrobials and host defenses

  • Some novel strategies in CAUTI prevention have targeted biofilms

Scanning electron micrograph of S. aureus bacteria on the luminal surface of an indwelling catheter with a biofilm―an interwoven complex matrix of extracellular polymeric substances

Photograph from CDC Public Health Image Library:

Cauti definitions and diagnosis

CAUTI Definitions and Diagnosis

  • Indwelling catheter for preceding 48 hours prior to the onset of the UTI

  • UTI develops 48 hours after transfer from a healthcare location = transfer rule

  • Symptomatic bacteruria

    • >105 colony-forming units with no more than 2 organisms on cultures

    • Elevated WBC on urinalysis

    • 2 or more: dysuria, fever/chills, malaise, change in urine character, odor, hematuria, change in mental status

Evidence based risk factors for cauti

Evidence-based Risk Factors for CAUTI

* Main modifiable risk factors † Also inform recommendations

Treatment of symptomatic cauti

Treatment ofSymptomatic CAUTI

  • Identify microorganism and differentiate that species from other bacteria found in the catheter

  • Initial treatment is empirical — base oral therapy on culture/sensitivity results

  • Treat early to avoid urosepsis

Prevention of cauti


Core Strategies

  • High levels of scientific evidence

  • Demonstrated feasibility

Supplemental Strategies

  • Variable levels of feasibility

  • Some scientific evidence

Prevention of cauti1

Prevention of CAUTI

  • Prompt catheter removal

  • Use alternative method of bladder drainage

    • Spontaneous voiding with assist

    • Clean intermittent self-catheterization (CIC)

    • External condom (men)

  • If removal is not an option:

    • Use smallest lumen and balloon possible (5 mL)

    • Close drainage system with collection device below bladder/tubing

Core prevention strategies all category ib

Core Prevention Strategies(All Category IB)

  • Insert catheters only for appropriate indications

  • Leave catheters in place only as long as needed

  • Ensure that only properly trained persons insert and maintain catheters

  • Insert catheters using aseptic technique and sterile equipment (acute care setting)

  • Following aseptic insertion, maintain a closed drainage system

  • Maintain unobstructed urine flow

  • Hand hygiene and standard (or appropriate isolation) precautions

Core prevention strategies insert catheters only for appropriate indications examples

Core Prevention StrategiesInsert catheters only forappropriate indications: examples

  • Patient has acute urinary retention or bladder outlet obstruction

  • Need for accurate measurements of urinary output in critically ill patients

  • Perioperative use for selected surgical procedures

  • To assist in healing of open sacral or perineal wounds in incontinent patients

  • Patient requires prolonged immobilization

  • To improve comfort for end-of-life care if needed

Core prevention strategies insert catheters only for appropriate indications

Core Prevention StrategiesInsert catheters only forappropriate indications

  • Minimize use in all patients, particularly those at higher risk of CAUTI and mortality (women, elderly, pts with impaired immunity)

  • Avoid use for management of incontinence

  • Use catheters in operative patients only as necessary

Core prevention strategies leave catheters in place only as long as needed

Core Prevention StrategiesLeave catheters in placeonly as long as needed

  • Remove catheters as soon as possible postoperatively, preferably within 24 hours, unless there are appropriate indications for continued use

The american geriatrics society geriatrics health professionals

Core Prevention StrategiesInsert catheters using aseptic technique and sterile equipment (acute care setting)

  • Perform hand hygiene before and after insertion

  • Use sterile gloves, drape, sponges, antiseptic or sterile solution for periurethral cleaning, single-use packet of lubricant jelly

  • Properly secure catheters

Core prevention strategies following aseptic insertion maintain a closed drainage system

Core Prevention StrategiesFollowing aseptic insertion,maintain a closed drainage system

  • If breaks in aseptic technique, disconnection, or leakage occur, replace catheter and collecting system using aseptic technique and sterile equipment

  • Consider systems with pre-connected, sealed catheter-tubing junctions

  • Obtain urine samples aseptically

Core prevention strategies maintain unobstructed urine flow

Core Prevention StrategiesMaintain unobstructed urine flow

  • Keep catheter and collecting tube free from kinking

  • Keep collecting bag below level of bladder at all times (do not rest bag on floor)

  • Empty collecting bag regularly using a separate, clean container for each patient

  • Ensure drainage spigot does not contact nonsterile container

Supplemental prevention strategies examples

Supplemental Prevention Strategies: Examples

  • Consider alternatives to indwelling urinary catheterization

  • Use portable ultrasound devices for assessing urine volume, to reduce unnecessary catheterizations

  • Use antimicrobial/antiseptic-impregnated catheters (after first implementing core recommendations for use, insertion, and maintenance)

Supplemental prevention alternatives to indwelling catheters

Supplemental Prevention Alternatives to Indwelling Catheters

  • Intermittent catheterization

    • Consider for patients requiring chronic urinary drainage for neurogenic bladder

      • Spinal cord injury

      • Other types of neurogenic injuries (stroke)

    • Consider for postoperative patients with urinary retention

    • May be used in combination with bladder ultrasound scanners

  • External (i.e., condom) catheters

    • Consider for cooperative male patients without obstruction or urinary retention

Supplemental prevention bladder ultrasound scanners

Supplemental Prevention Bladder Ultrasound Scanners

  • Rationale: fewer catheterizations = lower risk of UTI

  • 2 studies of adults with neurogenic bladder undergoing intermittent catheterization

  • Inpatient rehabilitation centers

  • Fewer catheterizations per day but no reported differences in UTI

    • Significant study limitations: likely underpowered; UTIs undefined

Polliak T, et al. Spinal Cord. 2005;43:615-619.

Anton HA, et al. Arch Phys Med Rehab. 1998;79:172-175.

Supplemental prevention silver coated catheters

Supplemental Prevention Silver-coated Catheters

  • Decreased risk of bacteriuria compared to standard latex catheters in a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

  • Significant differences for silver alloy coatings but not silver oxide coatings

  • Effect greater for patients catheterized < 1 week

  • Mixed results in observational studies in hospitalized patients

    • Most used laboratory-based outcomes (bacteriuria)

    • 1 positive, 2 negative, 5 inconclusive

Strategies not recommended for cauti prevention

Strategies NOT recommended for CAUTI prevention

  • Complex urinary drainage systems (e.g., antiseptic-releasing cartridges in drain port)

  • Changing catheters or drainage bags at routine, fixed intervals (clinical indications include infection, obstruction, or compromise of closed system)

  • Routine antimicrobial prophylaxis

  • Cleaning of periurethral area with antiseptics while catheter is in place (use routine hygiene)

  • Irrigation of bladder with antimicrobials

  • Instillation of antiseptic or antimicrobial solutions into drainage bags

  • Routine screening for asymptomatic bacteriuria

Acute urinary retention in the postoperative setting


Identify potential remediable causes:

Acute urinary retention voiding trials

Acute Urinary Retention: Voiding Trials

  • Remove catheter (never clamp)

    • Check post-void residual urine volume (PVR) after first void

    • If no void, check PVR after 6 hours

    • If PVR <100150 mL, okay to leave out catheter

    • Close follow-up needed

  • Reinsert catheter

    • PVR  150 mL

    • Follow-up in 1 week for a second voiding trial in the outpatient setting

    • Document in discharge summary for NH residents

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