Will a Male External Catheter Help My Bladder Leaks?

If you are a man who suffers from bladder leaks, we recommend certain incontinence products to make your life easier. 

And please note, incontinence products don't have to mean adult diapers; they can also be external catheters for men (sometimes called "condom catheters"). The incontinence supplies of today are more versatile, discreet, and absorbent than ever. In most instances, unless you tell, no one will know you aren't just wearing underwear. But first, external catheters for men list as both catheter supplies and incontinence supplies. So which are they? Both! 

A male external catheter is for men who can not stop bladder leaks before they happen. They can't make it to the toilet in time before an accident. They risk losing the full contents of the bladder once the urine begins to flow. While bladder leaks can be embarrassing, they are okay. Leaks occur for many reasons: prostate damage, nerve damage, bladder spasms, a weak pelvic floor, and obesity can cause bladder damage.

Airplane pilots, endurance athletes, sports fanatics (think of the the Stadium Pal), also use external catheters. Men accept them in those situations even if no one in those situations think of them as a piece of medical equipment.

So how do I wear and use a male catheter?

Men wear these condom-style catheters for extended periods of time. They connect the catheter tip to drainage tubing that you wear against the leg discreetly. This tubing connects either to a leg bag, strapped to the leg, or to an overnight drainage bottle or bag. If you wear a leg bag, the bag will strap around your thigh or calf. If you use an overnight bag, the bag will hang from the bed.

The tubing for a leg bag will be shorter than the tubing for an overnight bag because the distance is shorter for the leg bag. Too much tube length would show or be bulky. The tubing for an overnight bag should be long so it stays attached while a person lies in the bed. If no tubing attaches, the male catheter will not prevent urine from leaking. 

Men with bladder leaks also need incontinence pads for men, as well as male incontinence underwear. The steps for securing a male external catheter are many. Placing the male catheter onto the penis and securing it and connecting the tube to either the leg bag, or the overnight bag, requires a clear head and manual dexterity. It is several confusing steps if you have dementia or have lost your manual dexterity. In those instances, incontinence underwear is a better option

Do you have any questions about catheter supplies? We've been selling wholesale medical supplies since 1984, so there is no question we can not answer. Leave your comments below!


SuLauren Wilson is the founder of Finnegan Medical Supply, an online medical supply store based in Little Rock, Ark. She blogs regularly on issues affecting the company’s patients. Although, she has many years of experience in the healthcare industry, she is not a licensed medical professional, and the content of her posts should not be considered medical advice.

POSTED ON: June 20 2014
Posted by:Su-Lauren Wilson owner,CFO
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