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Recording and Measuring the Urinary Output

Keeping a track of the urinary output is very important, as it indicates whether the patient’s kidneys are working well or not. As a certified nursing assistant, you need to accomplish this task (measurement and recording of the urinary output) on a regular basis. Generally you will be required to measure the patient’s urinary output in two situations – when s/he uses a bedpan or wears indwelling catheter.

Procedure to Measure the Urinary Output When the Patient Wears Indwelling Catheter

  • Wash your hands with antiseptic soap and lukewarm water.
  • Observe the numeric labeling mark on the plastic bag, which is used to collect the output. Normally it should be 30-400 ccs per hour. In case, it is more or less then you need to inform the nurse immediately.
  • The color of urine must be pale yellow or transparent. If you observe any abnormalities in the color you must report it to the nurse right away.
  • In case the urine contains blood, then the supervisor nurse must be informed immediately.
  • As instructed to you by the nurse, replace the urine bag or empty it and re-install it.
  • Wash your hands after you finish the whole procedure.

Procedure to Measure the Urinary Output When Patient Uses the Bedpan

  • Make use of lukewarm water and antiseptic soap to rinse your hands.
  • Make the patient turn his/her sideways and place the bedpan below his/her buttocks. After placing it firmly, make the patient turn back and lie on his/her back again.
  • Make him comfortable by making the bed a little upwards.
  • Move away from the patient and give him complete privacy. Pull down the curtains of the patient’s room.
  • Dispose of your gloves.
  • Wash your hands properly with antiseptic soap and lukewarm water.
  • After the patient is done with the work, you must wear gloves again.
  • Lower the raised portion of the bed to bring it back to the original position.
  • Let the patient move to one of his sides and remove the bedpan carefully, so that the contents of bedpan do not spill.
  • Keep the bedpan aside after you remove it from below the patient.
  • Clean the genitals of the patient properly with soap and water and dry using a disposable towel.
  • Make the patient lie on his back again and make him wear clothes.
  • Measure and record the contents of the bedpan accurately.
  • Dispose of the contents of the bedpan and clean it properly for next use.
  • Dispose of the gloves that you were wearing and wash your hands properly with antiseptic soap and lukewarm water.

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Points to be Noted

It is important that the urinary output of the patient is measured properly, as it helps diagnose any complications in the patient’s health. A slight change in the color of the urine could be indication of some disease. An early diagnose of the ailment may help in administration of the right treatment on time.

Expert’s Advice

  • You must never forget to measure the urinary output of the resident patient. It gives an idea that the bladder, kidneys and vital organs of the patient are working properly.
  • You must know how to observe the signs of infection in the patient’s urine.
  • As soon as you find any infections in urine, its treatment should be started right away, so be very regular with your measurement.
  • If the quantity of the urinary output is very little in the catheter bag, then also try to take the reading accurately.
  • Measure the amount of liquid intake by the patient whole day.
  • Always keep track of diet chart, fluid intake and medicines of the patient on your own, without relying on others.