Urine Drainage Bags - Home Use
This handout will help you learn how to use the leg bag and nighttime large urinary drainage bags. Your nurse will go over this information with you. Please ask questions. If you have any concerns after you go home, please call the phone numbers listed at the end of this handout. Nurses are available 24 hours/day to help you.
You may switch from the night bag to the leg bag and vice-versa at your convenience. Be sure to empty and clean the bags when not in use.
Attaching a Bag
- Both leg and nighttime bags attach at the same point.
- The bag is a one-way system.
- The leg bag is marked "TOP" to assist you in placing it in the correct position.
Changing a Bag
- Wash your hands with soap and water and dry well.
- Make sure to close the clamps on the bottom of the bag you are removing and the one you are putting on to prevent urine from accidentally draining out.
- Wipe the tube with an alcohol wipe.
- Squeeze the rubber tubing to prevent the urine from leaking.
- Remove the bag you are presently using.
- Remove and save the cap that covers the tip of the new bag.
- Attach the new bag.
- Cover the tip of the bag you are removing with the cap from the new bag.
- Place the straps of the leg bag around your leg at a comfortable spot (not over the knee). Do not put the straps so tight that they leave a mark on your leg. These may have to be readjusted once you stand.
- The bag should be kept lower than your kidneys which are at the level of the bottom of your rib cage.
- Empty the urine from the bag you just removed into the toilet unless you have been instructed to measure the amount.
- If you are to record the amount, drain the urine into the container provided for this purpose, record the amount and discard the urine into the toilet.
- Rinse the bag with a mixture of 1/2 cup white vinegar and 1/2 cup tap water using the syringe provided. Drain. Rinse with clear water using the syringe. Allow the bag to air-dry.
Emptying a Bag
We use different types of leg bags at University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics. You will have one of the following types:
Wash your hands with soap and water. Dry with a clean towel. Loosen the cap at the bottom of the bag. It will not come off. Drain the urine directly into the toilet, unless you have been instructed to measure it first. After you have drained the urine, tighten the cap again. Wash your hands again.
Wash your hands with soap and water. Dry with a clean towel. Remove the cap completely from the bottom drain. Drain the urine directly into the toilet unless you have been instructed to measure it first. Replace the cap tightly. Wash your hands again.
Wash your hands with soap and water. Dry with a clean towel. To empty the bag, pull the tube downward from the plastic bracket. Hold the tube over the toilet or the appropriate container if you need to measure the amount. Open the metal or plastic clamp. Usually, you will be able to open it by pressing inward with your thumb. Let the urine drain out. Close the clamp tightly. You will hear a "click" when the clamp is closed. Place the tube back into the plastic bracket. Wash your hands again.
If you have any problems or questions call either:
The Urology Clinic (608) 263-4757 - 24 hours
The Gynecology Clinic, 8-4:30 Monday to Friday (608) 263-6240
After hours, nights, weekends and holidays, (608) 262-0486.
This will give you the paging operator. Ask for the urology or gynecology resident on call. Give the operator your name and phone number with the area code. The doctor will call you back.
If you live out of the area, please call 1-800-323-8942
Your medical record number ______________________________________
The Spanish version of this Health Facts for You is #7035.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 06/19/2012
Copyright © 06/19/2012 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#4591
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