BMJ Case Reports 2017; doi:10.1136/bcr-2017-221498
  • Learning from errors

Knotted urethral catheter: an unusual complication in adults

  1. Jeetesh Bhardwa
  1. Department of Urology, Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, Slough, UK
  1. Correspondence to Samer Jallad, samer.jallad{at}
  • Accepted 1 October 2017
  • Published 10 October 2017


Knotting of feeding tubes or urinary catheters has been reported as a rare complication in paediatrics when draining the bladder. This is caused by inserting thin flexible tubes too far in, allowing it to coil. We present a case of a 70-year-old woman who was catheterised during a routine spinal surgery, and the catheter coiled and balloon failed to deflate requiring a cystostopic approach to puncture the balloon and remove it. Awareness of this complication in female catheterisation and education on length of catheter insertion is important to avoid this.


  • Contributors All authors have contributed to this work. SJ and JB planned and designed the initial draft. SJ and AS acquired and edited the images to comply with BMJ requirements. All authors (SJ, AS and JB) contributed to writing and editing the manuscript and discussion.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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