Since the beginning of time, patients with acute urinary retention have relied on tube-like materials to empty their bladders. Ancient Chinese history indicates that onion stalks may have been used for catheterization, and Mediterranean civilizations described tubes of wood and precious metals to drain urine. Today, catheters are used in many specialties—primarily to inject fluid or to drain it—and considered one of civilization's first therapeutic instruments. Learn more about the history and development of catheterization.
The Didusch Center boasts a collection of catheters ranging from a replica of the silver-coil catheter developed by Founding Father Benjamin Franklin to 19th century catheters concealed in hat bands and canes to modern day Foley catheters.