What is a sheath?

A Sheath is very similar to a contraceptive condom. It fits over the penis and collects urine as it leaves the body. You may also hear them called Condom catheters, Uridomes, Texas catheters or External catheters. They can be connected to a drainage bag or alternatively a catheter valve if your leakage is very light.

More likely to suit you if...Less likely to suit you if...
  • You wish to avoid using pads
  • Using a device (as opposed to a pad or catheter) is acceptable to you
  • You wish to avoid the inconvenience of frequent pad changes
  • You have found indwelling catheters to be uncomfortable (sheaths tend to be more comfortable than indwelling catheters)
  • You have had a problem with infection with indwelling catheters (sheaths are associated with less infection than indwelling catheters)
  • You have good hand control
  • You have good memory and mental function
  • You have skin damage on or around the penis
  • Urinary tract infection is a major concern for you
  • You or your helper are unwilling or unable to fit the sheath

Being circumcised is a great help for keeping them on all day. A pop on (modified) sheath is best for short penis as adhesive sticks to glans.


Top Tips

  1. A good barrier product can be used before wearing a sheath. It helps to protect the skin. (Thank you for your tip - some skin protectors can also interfere with sheath adhesion so please check FAQs)
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  3. Sheaths tend to fall off, not just a matter of fitting the right size as penis is often a different size when applying sheath to later in day (i.e. semi-erect when applying, but much smaller when out in the cold).
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  5. Use a catheter retainer strap, it stops the sheath kinking and blowing off – place over junction of sheath and bag
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  7. I was given some sheath samples without any instructions. I found useful guidance on the internet (youtube)
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  9. Stand over toilet or bidet when removing sheath - so drips go in loo or bidet
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