Urinary catheter users commonly experience adverse health effects associated with catheter usage, such as urinary tract infections, kidney infections, bladder spasms, blockages, and leakage. However, the chemicals used in manufacturing catheters are often overlooked as a potential health risk for catheter users.

At HR Urological, we take patient safety very seriously, and we want you to have all the facts so you can make informed decisions about the catheters you are using. Join us as we take a look at DEHP and why you should switch to DEHP-free catheters.

What is DEHP?

DEHP, or di-(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate, is a manufactured chemical that is commonly added to plastics to make PVC more flexible. DEHP is listed on the Proposition 65 registry as a known carcinogen and a chemical known to cause reproductive harm in men.

DEHP can be found in many household plastic products such as tablecloths, shower curtains, flooring, upholstery, swimming pool liners, garden hoses, plastic food containers, sheathing for wire and cable, and more.

Unfortunately, DEHP is also found in many intermittent catheters on the market today.

Reducing Your Exposure to the Known Carcinogen

Using catheters with DEHP can expose patients to higher levels of DEHP because the carcinogen can seep from the plastic tubing into the body and bladder.

While it can be nearly impossible to completely avoid contact with some DEHP because it is commonly used in household plastics, you can avoid using catheters with DEHP.

Catheters made with DEHP have warning labels on them. Look for these warning labels on the catheter package or the box that they arrive in.

caution symbolWARNING: This product can expose you to chemicals including DI(2-ETHYLHEXYL) PHTHALATE (DEHP), which is known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov.

Switch to DEHP-Free Catheters

Thankfully, there is a large selection of quality-made, user-friendly DEHP-free catheters, like TruCath® Intermittent Catheters, on the market today that you can switch to that will help reduce your exposure to the harmful carcinogen.

TruCath® Intermittent Catheters are manufactured with quality materials designed for safety and are never made with natural rubber latex or DEHP. TruCath® products are designed for maximum comfort and are available in male, female, and pediatric sizes.

Look for the not made with DEHP symbol

When switching to DEHP-free catheters, look for the “Not made with DEHP” symbol

If you are a catheter user, you can help reduce your exposure to DEHP by switching to DEHP-free catheters like TruCath® Intermittent Catheters. If you’d like to learn more about DEHP-free catheters, contact us today or ask your medical supplier to try TruCath® catheters today and receive free samples.


Want to Learn More About DEHP and Proposition 65?

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry:
ToxFAQs™ for Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP)
Proposition 65:
About Prop 65
DEHP Fact Sheet