A straight catheter is one of the most common types of intermittent catheter in use at medical facilities and homes across the country. This catheter is easy to use and also is available in a variety of materials and sizes to increase the level of comfort for any person needing them. The inability to empty the bladder fully is a painful and serious condition and anything that can be done to add sterility and comfort to the process is a real help. The term "straight" in a catheter refers to the tip. This distinguishes it from a Coudé catheter that has a curved tip and is used mostly in the case where an enlarged prostate is blocking the urethra.

A straight catheter is generally a single lumen style, which means its main purpose is to deliver urine from the bladder into a collection bag. A single lumen means a larger channel for emptying the bladder and this in one of the reasons a straight cath performs so well as an intermittent catheter. Foley catheters, on the other hand, are primarily used as an indwelling catheter. A Foley cath has multiple lumens that can be used to not only let urine out, but it has a channel for sterile water to inflate a balloon to keep it securely lodged in the bladder once positioned. It may have an optional third lumen to deliver medications into the body. This makes a Foley catheter a highly specialized form of a straight tipped catheter.

The materials used to make a straight catheter are normally plastic. The choice of plastic is inexpensive and this is important because most single lumen straight caths are designed for one-time usage like intermittent catheterization. Plastic is a stiff material and not comfortable for long-term use when an indwelling catheter is needed. This lack of flexibility coupled with the extra steps needed to keep a straight cath properly positioned in the bladder are both reasons that the latex Foley catheter has become the best type of catheter for long-term usage.

There are various sizes available in all styles of catheters and the straight catheter is no exception. It may take experimentation to find the one that allows for easy insertion while still maintaining comfort. Once the proper size is found it is easy and convenient to order straight catheters in bulk both locally or online at shops like Amazon. The single Straight Catheterlumen type of straight catheter can be purchased in bulk for less than a dollar each. Besides plastic there are rubber, latex and silicone catheters available, too. This is important because many people have allergic reactions to many materials. The primary difference between a male and female catheter is length due to the fact the women have a shorter urethra. Either gender can use them.

The benefits of using a straight catheter are the ease of insertion, cost and availability. For those people that must self-cath intermittently throughout the day due to a weak bladder, a straight tip catheter is quick and easy to use. Bladder issues do not have to slow anyone down once they understand what lifestyle choices make a difference. It may take practice, but men and women all over the country use these catheters daily by the thousands to empty their bladders. They are also easy to use for caregivers and others involved in home health nursing to help bedridden patients void their bladders. The cost is minimal and in many cases is covered by insurance. These catheters are almost universally available and shopping for them online means home delivery of individually packaged, sterile catheters right at the doorstep.