Optimal timing of urinary catheter removal following pelvic colorectal surgery: a systematic review and meta-analysis Academic Article uri icon

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  • PURPOSE: Acute urinary retention (AUR) is a common postoperative complication in colorectal surgery. In pelvic colorectal operations, the optimal duration for postoperative urinary catheter use is controversial. This systematic review and meta-analysis aims to compare early (POD 1), intermediate (POD 3), and late (POD 5) urinary catheter removal. METHODS: Medline, EMBASE, CENTRAL, and PubMed databases were searched. Articles were eligible for inclusion if they compared patients with urinary catheter removal on POD 1 or earlier to patients with urinary catheter removal on POD 2 or later in major pelvic colorectal surgeries. The primary outcome was rate of postoperative AUR. The secondary outcome was rates of postoperative urinary tract infection (UTI). RESULTS: From 691 relevant citations, five studies with 928 patients were included. Comparison of urinary catheter removal on POD 1 versus POD 3 demonstrated no significant difference in rate of urinary retention (RR 1.36, 95%CI 0.83-2.21, P = 0.22); however, compared to POD 5, rates of AUR were significantly higher (RR 2.58, 95%CI 1.51-4.40, P = 0.0005). Rates of UTI were not significantly different between POD 1 and POD 3 urinary catheter removal (RR 0.40, 95%CI 0.05-3.71, P = 0.45), but removal on POD 5 significantly increased risk of UTI compared to POD 1 (RR 0.50, 95%CI 0.31-0.81, P = 0.005). CONCLUSION: Risk of AUR can be minimized with late postoperative urinary catheter removal compared to early removal, but at the cost of increased risk of UTI. Patient-specific factors should be taken into consideration when deciding upon optimal duration of postoperative urinary catheterization.


  • Lee, Yung
  • McKechnie, Tyler
  • Springer, Jeremy E
  • Doumouras, Aristithes G
  • Hong, Dennis
  • Eskicioglu, Cagla

publication date

  • December 2019