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Authors Nathwani JN, Law KE, Ray RD, O'Connell Long BR, Fiers RM, D'Angelo AL, DiMarco SM, Pugh CM
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Journal J. Surg. Res. Volume: 205 Issue: 1 Pages: 121-6
Publish Date 2016 Sep
PubMed ID 27621008
PMC ID 5485826

Urinary catheter insertion is a common procedure performed in hospitals. Improper catheterization can lead to unnecessary catheter-associated urinary tract infections and urethral trauma, increasing patient morbidity. To prevent such complications, guidelines were created on how to insert and troubleshoot urinary catheters. As nurses have an increasing responsibility for catheter placement, resident responsibility has shifted to more complex scenarios. This study examines the clinical decision-making skills of surgical residents during simulated urinary catheter scenarios. We hypothesize that during urinary catheterization, residents will make inconsistent decisions relating to catheter choices and clinical presentations.Forty-five general surgery residents (postgraduate year 2-4) in Midwest training programs were presented with three of four urinary catheter scenarios of varying difficulty. Residents were allowed 15 min to complete the scenarios with five different urinary catheter choices. A chi-square test was performed to examine the relation between initial and subsequent catheter choices and to evaluate for consistency of decision-making for each scenario.Eighty-two percent of residents performed scenario A; 49% performed scenario B; 64% performed scenario C, and 82% performed scenario D. For initial attempt for scenario A-C, the 16 French Foley catheter was the most common choice (38%, 54%, 50%, P’s < 0.001), whereas for scenario D, the 16 French Coude was the most common choice (37%, P < 0.01). Residents were most likely to be successful in achieving urine output in the initial catheterization attempt (P < 0.001). Chi-square analyses showed no relationship between residents’ first and subsequent catheter choices for each scenario (P’s > 0.05).Evaluation of clinical decision-making shows that initial catheter choice may have been deliberate based on patient background, as evidenced by the most popular choice in scenario D. Analyses of subsequent choices in each of the catheterization models reveal inconsistency. These findings suggest a possible lack of competence or training in clinical decision-making with regard to urinary catheter choices in residents.

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