A urinary catheter is a tube placed in the body to drain and collect urine from the bladder. Urinary catheters are used to drain the bladder. Your health care provider may recommend that you use a catheter if you have:
Urinary incontinence (leaking urine or being unable to control when you urinate)
Urinary retention (being unable to empty your bladder when you need to)
Surgery on the prostate or genitals
Other medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, or dementia
Catheters come in many sizes, materials (latex, silicone, Teflon™), and types (Foley, straight, coude tip).