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Male Catheter Insertion:
The Exact Steps for Successful Self Insertion Without Pain

Male catheter insertion requires a precise series of steps to be done by yourself so as to avoid pain if done properly.

Proper techniques will help you experience inserting the catheter successfully even with an enlarged prostate. By following my steps you will succeed and you will feel discomfort but not awful pain.

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I have done it many times and have learned many simple tricks to ensure your success. Male catheter insertion, also known as urinary catheter insertion for men, is becoming much more common today than 50 years ago.

Please read up on the causes of prostate problems so you can learn how to avoid this crisis in the future!

Learning about catheters is an important first step so you can choose the best one to use. And even without the best ones, you will still succeed, saving you time and hassle from going to a hospital if you hae a sudden prostate attack that shuts you down.

This is called acute urinary retention where not a drop makes it out even though you have to go something fierce!

On other pages, I describe what can cause this severe reaction so you can learn to avoid this prostate problem in the future.

But I want to make something clear to you, dear reader. I am not a doctor and cannot take responsibility for your decision to do self catheterization, the term used to describe the do-it-yourself process of doing your own male catheter insertion.

While many men do their own urinary male catheter insertion, it is a decision you should take in consultation with your medical professional. And if this is an emergency situation where you cannot get to a doctor then you will find my steps invaluable.

You see, I know, because I had to do it many times and a very enlarged prostate makes it more difficult to get it through the last bit of the prostatic urethra which is through the inside of your prostate. The penis is no problem if you have the right tools.

Hey guys, you know all about the right tools for the job. The same applies here. Get the tools right and with some good technique, you will be able to do this.

You may be scared, and if you are reading this while in pain, then know that you will be OK very soon.

The relief you will feel shortly will be as big as the pain you are feeling now if you cannot urinate. So hang tight!

If you have the catheter on hand then relax as I guide you through how to do it.

Here is how to do male catheter insertion...

Self Catheterization for Men

Lie down with your prostate kit that has a simpler non-lubricated catheter. You will need to be more careful with sterility because more handling is involved. Be meticulous to avoid infection. In all my many uses of self catheterization, I have never had a urinary tract infection problem because I was always careful to keep everything sterile.

This is how to insert a male catheter using a non-lubricated catheter:

  1. As above wash hands and penis and then lie down with kit beside you. Hopefully you will have KY, Xylocaine, or another lubricant - but always a water soluble one never an oil base like vaseline. Vaseline will block the holes near the tip of the catheter and prevent the urine coming out!
  2. Sterilize everything—the tube, the cap, the penis. I use many pieces of Kleenex with alcohol as I do all this.
  3. Remove the catheter from the package by touching only the external end. The package is not sterile so discard.
  4. Wipe your fingers again with alcohol and then the catheter and place on several flat pieces of Kleenex beside you.
  5. Wipe first the KY or Xylocaine tube and then open it. If there is a special applicator tip, wipe it and place it on the tip of the tube with your sterile fingers. If not, then wipe the tip of the tube really well with alcohol.
  6. Wipe your penis tip area and glans with alcohol to disinfect.
  7. Hold your penis with one hand and pull back the glans and open the tip.
  8. Insert the tip of the tube and squeeze some lubricant or Xylocaine into the penis.
  9. Wipe the tube and tip again for reuse. Wipe fingers again. Wiping always with fresh alcohol on tissue. Always remember to keep everything sterile.
  10. Grab the catheter and wipe that again at the tip area up towards the external end.
  11. Then apply some lubricant or Xylocaine to the catheter tip up maybe 3-4 inches, being careful to avoid the openings where the urine will enter. Never use Vaseline—it is oil based and it could block the tip openings for urine entry into the catheter.
  12. Now you are ready to insert the catheter into the tip of the penis making sure not to touch the catheter to anything but the entry into the penis.
  13. Once inside, you start to push it in gently but at a steady slow pace. PULL YOUR PENIS STRONGLY SO IT IS STICKING STRAIGHT UP at a right angle to your body. STRETCHING IT WILL MAKE IT EASIER TO FIND ITS WAY THROUGH AS IT GOES DEEPER! THIS IS AN IMPORTANT TECHNIQUE!
  14. You can wipe the tube after the first few inches with Kleenex and alcohol to make sure it is sterile as you push it through and can add some more lubricant or Xylocaine if you want.
  15. Then follow the above instructions, paying special attention to being careful and turning the catheter to help it find its way home into the bladder.
  16. DIY male catheter insertion requires that you go gently but steadily, twisting it slightly as you do so. If there is any spot where it does not want to go further, then do NOT push hard! Instead use finesse to twist the catheter until it can find a way through. FINESSE - GENTLE - TWIST. Pay attention please!!! If you still find it hard to get through, it is because your prostate is really inflamed and enlarged. Take your time to breathe deep and relax. Male catheter insertion requires being gentle! The catheter will at this point be sliding outwards some from its furthest point inside. Just twist it a bit and start moving it back deeper in. With gentle finesse, it will find a way through. Just be patient until it pushes through. But never ever force it. Just twist a bit and gently push. Back off if you need to and move it gently back with a slight twist and you will succeed. Always pull your penis up as described above.
  17. Once you pop through into the bladder (and it will seem like a lot of the catheter has disappeared inside you), suddenly urine will squirt free from the external end. Just put your thumb against the end and place it in the bottle. Then push the catheter a little further so that it is well inside the bladder.
  18. Keep the bottle as low as you can beside you so gravity works to void the bladder.
  19. You should now be emptying and feeling such a wonderful sense of relief. Aaaah! Oh so good! At last relief!
  20. Job well done! Keep holding the catheter in place so that it doesn’t slip out a bit.
  21. Just lie there and feel the blessings of this little device that just saved your life!
  22. The bottle will be receiving more and more of the urine, slowing down eventually to a trickle.
  23. Relax and empty. Oh feels so good now!
  24. After a few minutes or so—there is no rush—and no more urine flows, then slowly remove a bit of the catheter towards the neck of the bladder. That may release the last bit of urine near the neck of the bladder.
  25. When done pull the catheter all the way out and discard beside you.
  26. Rest a bit before clean up.
  27. Sleep if you can.
  28. There is no need to worry now, because the act of putting the catheter through seems to open the channel and keeps it open after it is out. Soon, you will have your first pee. It may burn a bit as the ammonia in the urine touches any part that may have been irritated by the catheter but this should be very minor as these are such good catheters. Any discomfort will soon pass as the day progresses.
  29. If you do not know the cause, do your detective work and figure out what caused the prostate attack. Now is the time to personally test all that you recently ate.

During the day after you've done male catheter insertion, you may feel more of a burning sensation as you pee due to irritation. It will pass in a day or so. That’s why I love the SpeediCaths because the lubrication on the whole tube is much gentler on you and is superior to the tubes of lubricants—it is hyper slippery. It makes male catheter insertion so much easier!

Note: It is possible over the next while (days to weeks) to pass some blood and blood-colored urine or even clots of blood from possible trauma of using the catheter or debris from the prostate. This condition will pass and is not cause for alarm unless you get steady amounts of fresh blood, which is a serious concern. Then seek medical help. Steady amounts of fresh blood should not result from regular use of a catheter.

Male Catheter Insertion with a Lubricated Catheter

Note: Some lubricated catheters require the addition of a tablespoon or 2 of water to actually lube them at the time you use them.

If you bought ones like that and they are dry when you open the package, then just add the water to the pack and wait a minute for it to do its job.

There are many advantages of using lubricated catheters for male catheter insertion. You wouldn't think of using an non-lubricated condom. So if you have a choice always go with lubrication. I explained above how to use a regular non-lubed one in case that is all you have available. But be prepared and buy lubricated catheters here.


  1. Self contained unit lubricated and ready to go
  2. Much quicker and easier to use
  3. Not necessary to have anything else so easy to travel with and fast to use
  4. Much easier insertion because it is so slippery.
  5. It costs more but is it ever worth the extra!
  6. You can buy them individually or a box to save.

Go here to read about how to insert these hyper-slippery coude catheters:

Catheter Prostate Kit

Here is a list of items to create the minimal Prostate Kit. You really won’t need the optional items, but I list them in case you can’t find the coude catheter: SpeediCaths. If you want other less expensive catheters, go here: Other Catheters

Minimum Prostate Kit:

  • 1 SpeediCath catheter lubricated: SpeediCath Coudé Intermittent Catheters or Straight-Tip SpeediCath. Choose 12 gauge 14” (#28492 - 12 FR, 14" Length) catheter for men. Buy several so that you have back-ups for the car, home, work, travel bag, etc. 12 gauge is the thickness of the tube. If you can't get 12s then 14s are ok as well but not quite as thin. 10s are too thin.
  • 6– 10 Alcohol Prep Pads. You can get 200 for a few bucks.
  • Xylocaine (very optional): Xylocaine Ointment Tube or Lidocaine With SpeediCath, you really do not need these, but if you are worried, then get some.
  • KY jelly (also very optional)
  • A plastic ziplock bag to hold all the items together as your emergency prostate kit.

For home use:

  • The same kit as described above, but you can substitute a bottle of alcohol with Kleenex tissues that you wet for sterilizing in place of the Alcohol Prep Pads.
  • Include 2 towels.

Tip: Add a SpeediCath Coudé Intermittent Touchless Catheter to your first aid kit.


If you are having troubles inserting then it may be best to go to your emergency at your hospital!

In case you can't here is what to try.

In the very rare case that a lubricated catheter is unable to pass through the prostate using all the above techniques, Use a higher gauge one: if a 12 did not work, then use a 14. If 14 did not work, use a 16.

This is contrary to what you think that a thinner one would be easier to succeed. The problem is that it is not strong enough to push through your enlarged prostate. A wider one will do the trick!

Or if you have tried a 14 or 16 gauge and they haven't worked then dropping down to a 12 or 10 may be successful.

Make sure the blue line is pointing upwards so the coude tip is up and you will be able to push a little firmer. Use some Xylocaine before inserting as described earlier.

First Choice:

SpeediCath Coudé Intermittent Touchless CatheterSpeediCath Coudé Intermittent Touchless Catheter



Olive Tip Coude Catheter

That's still a soft catheter.

Another option is a stiffer one:

Stiffer Catheter

But the size is the key when you have problems getting through. That is why it is wise to have a bigger size as a Plan B just in case.

Go from Male Catheter Insertion to Types of Catheters

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What Other Visitors Have Asked or Said

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