Help! EBP on not inflating foley balloon prior to insertion

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    Hi All. Been hearing for a while now that new EBP is stating NOT to check the foley balloon before it's inserted as there have been patient injuries due to the balloons not being fully deflated before insertion. Problem is, I haven't been able to find such documentation. Anyone got any links/information I can use? Thanks in advance.
  2. 25 Comments so far...

  3. 1
    Check with the manufacturer- they should be able to provide research regarding their recommendations (provided they recommend not testing the balloon). My hospital changed the policy on balloon testing based on Bard's recommendations, and I would assume that they provided research to prompt the policy change.
    Otessa likes this.
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    I was taught in nursing school not to inflate the ballon prior to insertion as it can diminish the integrity of the ballon.

    Perhaps you could look from that angle.
    Seawitch and sevensonnets like this.
  5. 3
    Look at the balloon after you deflate it. Never heard of a patient getting hurt by a deflated balloon! Never seen any documentation on one either. No matter what fairy tales they tell, I check every balloon and I find leaks about 3 times per year. Where's the greater harm? Having to tell a patient he'll have to get another foley because the first one was defective (kinda inspires confidence, doesn't it?), or danger of some alleged injuries by the tested balloon? As always, your mileage may vary.
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    I took a new employee orientation at a university teaching hospital last year, and one of the instructors said that it was indeed EBP to NOT check the balloon first. Sorry, I have no references for you, just passing along what I learned. She said you can always tell the "old school" nurses from the new grads because the new grads don't check the balloon first (as that is now what they're teaching in schools).
    Otessa likes this.
  7. 1
    We also don't inflate the balloon prior to insertion, and our pts have been fine.
    Otessa likes this.
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    Check out this link, it might lead you to what you are looking for.

    http://www.nursing.ouhsc.edu/Researc...ientz2010.pptx
  9. 5
    Quote from klone
    I took a new employee orientation at a university teaching hospital last year, and one of the instructors said that it was indeed EBP to NOT check the balloon first. Sorry, I have no references for you, just passing along what I learned. She said you can always tell the "old school" nurses from the new grads because the new grads don't check the balloon first (as that is now what they're teaching in schools).
    That's funny because I am currently in school and I was taught catheter insertion in January of 2010 and we were taught to test the balloon before insertion. So i guess I am old school/new school.
    TheChair1, Deb123j, Tabbyg20, and 2 others like this.
  10. 4
    Quote from jabroadwater
    Check out this link, it might lead you to what you are looking for.

    http://www.nursing.ouhsc.edu/Researc...ientz2010.pptx
    Thanks for the link. I've never had to instill more than 2 or 3 cc's of water before getting squirted by a leak in the balloon. The change formed by testing a balloon is so small compared to even an 18 ga foley as to be insignificant, IMHO. It's been my experience that every change or new idea means more work for the nurses. I'm all for ANYONE OR ANYTHING that actually decreases a nurses workload. It defies my logic that the small change from testing a balloon causes more trauma than the catheter itself, and I'll gladly stop checking balloons for leaks when the balloons stop leaking. Now, should we start talking about defective IV tubings next?
    Otessa, Hoozdo, Tabbyg20, and 1 other like this.
  11. 0
    My question is if you don't check the ballon then you have a balloon inflate improperly due to a defect and you have that catheter balloon lopesided and its sitting on the bladder wall causing irritation/damage which is the lesser evil?


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