Coudefoley image courtesy of

What is a coude foley? Is it a germ, like when you were a kid nobody wanted to get cooties? Nope. A coude foley is actually a good thing, not a bad thing, and it is a name of French derivation, and it is pronounced ‘couday’. It is a type of urinary catheter called a foley, but it is just slightly different than a regular foley catheter but this can make a very big difference to a patient in some cases.

Why is this important?

If you have had prostate problems, or if you have had major surgery of any kind, you have probably had a temporary tube in the penis called a foley catheter. Patients with large prostates or at least a large middle lobe can sometimes be a challenge for getting the foley in the bladder where it needs to be. This is where the coude foley comes in. You may wonder if you have a large middle lobe, but this is only possible to know for sure if a urologist looks inside the penis and prostate and bladder with a telescope (cystoscopy). But you don’t have to know if you have a large middle lobe to benefit from knowing about a coude foley. If you ever need a foley catheter put in and there is any trouble at all, ask the person trying to place it to try a coude foley instead. It can be significantly easier for you and the foley placer. If they are not trained in the coude, ask them to find someone who is rather than persisting with a device that may not be ideal for you.

A regular foley is a perfectly straight tube. A coude foley has a slight curve near the end. The middle catheter in the illustration is the coude foley. It seems subtle but don’t underestimate the potential difference. A coude foley is not a cure-all. Some problems cannot be solved with a coude foley such as a urethral stricture. A Las Vegas urologist such as Dr. Newman would be able to help you.