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1.  Portable Bladder Ultrasound 
Executive Summary
The aim of this review was to assess the clinical utility of portable bladder ultrasound.
Clinical Need: Target Population and Condition
Data from the National Population Health Survey indicate prevalence rates of urinary incontinence are 2.5% in women and 1.4 % in men in the general population. Prevalence of urinary incontinence is higher in women than men and prevalence increases with age.
Identified risk factors for urinary incontinence include female gender, increasing age, urinary tract infections (UTI), poor mobility, dementia, smoking, obesity, consuming alcohol and caffeine beverages, physical activity, pregnancy, childbirth, forceps and vacuum-assisted births, episiotomy, abdominal resection for colorectal cancer, and hormone replacement therapy.
For the purposes of this review, incontinence populations will be stratified into the following; the elderly, urology patients, postoperative patients, rehabilitation settings, and neurogenic bladder populations.
Urinary incontinence is defined as any involuntary leakage of urine. Incontinence can be classified into diagnostic clinical types that are useful in planning evaluation and treatment. The major types of incontinence are stress (physical exertion), urge (overactive bladder), mixed (combined urge and stress urinary incontinence), reflex (neurological impairment of the central nervous system), overflow (leakage due to full bladder), continuous (urinary tract abnormalities), congenital incontinence, and transient incontinence (temporary incontinence).
Postvoid residual (PVR) urine volume, which is the amount of urine in the bladder immediately after urination, represents an important component in continence assessment and bladder management to provide quantitative feedback to the patient and continence care team regarding the effectiveness of the voiding technique. Although there is no standardized definition of normal PVR urine volume, measurements greater than 100 mL to 150 mL are considered an indication for urinary retention, requiring intermittent catheterization, whereas a PVR urine volume of 100 mL to 150 mL or less is generally considered an acceptable result of bladder training.
Urinary retention has been associated with poor outcomes including UTI, bladder overdistension, and higher hospital mortality rates. The standard method of determining PVR urine volumes is intermittent catheterization, which is associated with increased risk of UTI, urethral trauma and discomfort.
The Technology Being Reviewed
Portable bladder ultrasound products are transportable ultrasound devices that use automated technology to register bladder volume digitally, including PVR volume, and provide three-dimensional images of the bladder. The main clinical use of portable bladder ultrasound is as a diagnostic aid. Health care professionals (primarily nurses) administer the device to measure PVR volume and prevent unnecessary catheterization. An adjunctive use of the bladder ultrasound device is to visualize the placement and removal of catheters. Also, portable bladder ultrasound products may improve the diagnosis and differentiation of urological problems and their management and treatment, including the establishment of voiding schedules, study of bladder biofeedback, fewer UTIs, and monitoring of potential urinary incontinence after surgery or trauma.
Review Strategy
To determine the effectiveness and clinical utility of portable bladder ultrasound as reported in the published literature, the Medical Advisory Secretariat used its standard search strategy to retrieve international health technology assessments and English-language journal articles from selected databases. Nonsystematic reviews, nonhuman studies, case reports, letters, editorials, and comments were excluded.
Summary of Findings
Of the 4 included studies that examined the clinical utility of portable bladder ultrasound in the elderly population, all found the device to be acceptable. One study reported that the device underestimated catheterized bladder volume
In patients with urology problems, 2 of the 3 studies concerning portable bladder ultrasound found the device acceptable to use. However, one study did not find the device as accurate for small PVR volume as for catheterization and another found that the device overestimated catheterized bladder volume. In the remaining study, the authors reported that when the device’s hand-held ultrasound transducers (scanheads) were aimed improperly, bladders were missed, or lateral borders of bladders were missed resulting in partial bladder volume measurements and underestimation of PVR measurements. They concluded that caution should be used in interpreting PVR volume measured by portable bladder ultrasound machines and that catheterization may be the preferred assessment modality if an accurate PVR measurement is necessary.
All 3 studies with post-operative populations found portable bladder ultrasound use to be reasonably acceptable. Two studies reported that the device overestimated catheter-derived bladder volumes, one by 7% and the other by 21 mL. The third study reported the opposite, that the device underestimated catheter bladder volume by 39 mL but that the results remained acceptable
In rehabilitation settings, 2 studies found portable bladder ultrasound to underestimate catheter-derived bladder volumes; yet, both authors concluded that the mean errors were within acceptable limits.
In patients with neurogenic bladder problems, 2 studies found portable bladder ultrasound to be an acceptable alternative to catheterization despite the fact that it was not as accurate as catheterization for obtaining bladder volumes.
Lastly, examinations concerning avoidance of negative health outcomes showed that, after use of the portable bladder ultrasound, unnecessary catheterizations and UTIs were decreased. Unnecessary catheterizations avoided ranged from 16% to 47% in the selected articles. Reductions in UTI ranged from 38% to 72%.
In sum, all but one study advocated the use of portable bladder ultrasound as an alternative to catheterization.
Economic Analysis
An economic analysis estimating the budget-impact of BladderScan in complex continuing care facilities was completed. The analysis results indicated a $192,499 (Cdn) cost-savings per year per facility and a cost-savings of $2,887,485 (Cdn) for all 15 CCC facilities. No economic analysis was completed for long-term care and acute care facilities due to lack of data.
Considerations for Policy Development
Rapid diffusion of portable bladder ultrasound technology is expected. Recently, the IC5 project on improving continence care in Ontario’s complex continuing care centres piloted portable bladder ultrasound at 12 sites. Preliminary results were promising.
Many physicians and health care facilities already have portable bladder ultrasound devices. However, portable bladder ultrasound devices for PVR measurement are not in use at most health care facilities in Ontario and Canada. The Verathon Corporation (Bothell, Wisconsin, United States), which patents BladderScan, is the sole licensed manufacturer of the portable bladder ultrasound in Canada. Field monopoly may influence the rising costs of portable bladder ultrasound, particularly when faced with rapid expansion of the technology.
Several thousand residents of Ontario would benefit from portable bladder ultrasound. The number of residents of Ontario that would benefit from the technology is difficult to quantify, because the incidence and prevalence of incontinence are grossly under-reported. However, long-term care and complex continuing care institutions would benefit greatly from portable bladder ultrasound, as would numerous rehabilitation units, postsurgical care units, and urology clinics.
The cost of the portable bladder ultrasound devices ranges from $17,698.90 to $19,565.95 (Cdn) (total purchase price per unit as quoted by the manufacturer). Additional training packages, batteries and battery chargers, software, gel pads, and yearly warranties are additional costs. Studies indicate that portable bladder ultrasound is a cost-effective technology, because it avoids costs associated with catheterization equipment, saves nursing time, and reduces catheter-related complications and UTIs.
The use of portable bladder ultrasound device will affect the patient directly in terms of health outcomes. Its use avoids the trauma related to the urinary tract that catheterization inflicts, and does not result in UTIs. In addition, patients prefer it, because it preserves dignity and reduces discomfort.
PMCID: PMC3379524  PMID: 23074481
2.  Evaluation of Biomaterials for Bladder Augmentation using Cystometric Analyses in Various Rodent Models 
Renal function and continence of urine are critically dependent on the proper function of the urinary bladder, which stores urine at low pressure and expels it with a precisely orchestrated contraction. A number of congenital and acquired urological anomalies including posterior urethral valves, benign prostatic hyperplasia, and neurogenic bladder secondary to spina bifida/spinal cord injury can result in pathologic tissue remodeling leading to impaired compliance and reduced capacity1. Functional or anatomical obstruction of the urinary tract is frequently associated with these conditions, and can lead to urinary incontinence and kidney damage from increased storage and voiding pressures2. Surgical implantation of gastrointestinal segments to expand organ capacity and reduce intravesical pressures represents the primary surgical treatment option for these disorders when medical management fails3. However, this approach is hampered by the limitation of available donor tissue, and is associated with significant complications including chronic urinary tract infection, metabolic perturbation, urinary stone formation, and secondary malignancy4,5.
Current research in bladder tissue engineering is heavily focused on identifying biomaterial configurations which can support regeneration of tissues at defect sites. Conventional 3-D scaffolds derived from natural and synthetic polymers such as small intestinal submucosa and poly-glycolic acid have shown some short-term success in supporting urothelial and smooth muscle regeneration as well as facilitating increased organ storage capacity in both animal models and in the clinic6,7. However, deficiencies in scaffold mechanical integrity and biocompatibility often result in deleterious fibrosis8, graft contracture9, and calcification10, thus increasing the risk of implant failure and need for secondary surgical procedures. In addition, restoration of normal voiding characteristics utilizing standard biomaterial constructs for augmentation cystoplasty has yet to be achieved, and therefore research and development of novel matrices which can fulfill this role is needed.
In order to successfully develop and evaluate optimal biomaterials for clinical bladder augmentation, efficacy research must first be performed in standardized animal models using detailed surgical methods and functional outcome assessments. We have previously reported the use of a bladder augmentation model in mice to determine the potential of silk fibroin-based scaffolds to mediate tissue regeneration and functional voiding characteristics.11,12 Cystometric analyses of this model have shown that variations in structural and mechanical implant properties can influence the resulting urodynamic features of the tissue engineered bladders11,12. Positive correlations between the degree of matrix-mediated tissue regeneration determined histologically and functional compliance and capacity evaluated by cystometry were demonstrated in this model11,12. These results therefore suggest that functional evaluations of biomaterial configurations in rodent bladder augmentation systems may be a useful format for assessing scaffold properties and establishing in vivo feasibility prior to large animal studies and clinical deployment. In the current study, we will present various surgical stages of bladder augmentation in both mice and rats using silk scaffolds and demonstrate techniques for awake and anesthetized cystometry.
PMCID: PMC3486757  PMID: 22907252
Bioengineering; Issue 66; Medicine; Biomedical Engineering; Physiology; Silk; bladder tissue engineering; biomaterial; scaffold; matrix; augmentation; cystometry
3.  Hem-O-Lok clip: a neglected cause of severe bladder neck contracture and consequent urinary incontinence after robot-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy 
BMC Urology  2014;14:21.
Hem-o-lok clips are widely used during robot-assisted and laparoscopic radical prostatectomy to control the lateral pedicles. There are a few reports of hem-o-lok clip migration into the bladder or vesico-urethral anastomosis and only four cases of hem-o-lok clip migration resulting into bladder neck contracture. Herein, we describe the first case, to our knowledge, of hem-o-lok clip migration leading to severe bladder neck contracture and subsequent stress urinary incontinence.
Case presentation
A 62-year-old Caucasian man underwent robot-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy for a T1c Gleason 8 prostate cancer. One month after surgery the patient was fully continent; however, three months later, he presented with acute urinary retention requiring suprapubic drainage. Urethroscopy showed a hem-o-lok clip strongly attached to the area between the vesico-urethral anastomosis and the urethral sphincter and a severe bladder neck contracture behind it. Following cold-knife urethral incision and clip removal, the bladder neck contracture was widely resected. At 3-month follow-up, the patient voided spontaneously with a peak flow rate of 9.5 ml/sec and absence of post-void residual urine, but leaked 240 ml urine at the 24-hour pad test. To date, at 1-year follow-up, his voiding situation remains unchanged.
The present report provides further evidence for the risk of hem-o-lok clip migration causing bladder neck contracture, and is the first to demonstrate the potential of such complication to result into stress urinary incontinence.
PMCID: PMC3938024  PMID: 24555468
Laparoscopy; Complications; Prostatectomy; Foreign body
4.  Anterior Urethral Valves: Not Such a Benign Condition… 
Purpose: Anterior urethral valves (AUVs) is an unusual cause of congenital obstruction of the male urethra, being 15–30 times less common than posterior urethral valves (PUVs). It has been suggested that patients with congenital anterior urethral obstruction have a better prognosis than those with PUV, with less hydronephrosis, and a lower incidence of chronic renal insufficiency (5 vs. 30%). The long-term prognosis of AUVs is not clear in the literature. In this report we describe our experience and long-term follow up of patients with anterior urethral valve.
Materials and Methods: We retrospectively identified 13 patients who presented with the diagnosis of AUVs in our institutions between January 1994 and June 2012. Two patients were excluded: one patient had no follow up after intervention; the other had a follow up <1 year. From the 11 patients included, we evaluated the gestational age, prenatal and postnatal ultrasound findings, voiding cystourethrogram findings, age upon valve ablation, micturition pattern, creatinine, and clinical follow up.
Results: Between 1994 and 2012 we evaluated 150 patients with the diagnosis of urethral valves. Of this group, 11 patients (7.3%) had AUVs and an adequate follow up. Mean follow up is 6.3 years (2.5–12 years). Five (45.4%) patients had prenatal diagnosis of AUV. The most common prenatal ultrasonographic finding was bilateral hydronephrosis and distended bladder. One patient showed a large perineal cystic mass, which was confirmed to be a dilated anterior urethra. The mean gestational age was 37.6 weeks (27–40 WGA). Postnatally, 90% had trabeculated bladder, 80% hydronephrosis, and 40% renal dysplasia. The most common clinical presentation was urinary tract infection in five patients (45.4%), followed by weak urinary stream found in four patients (36.3%). The age at initial surgical intervention ranged between 7 days and 13 years. Seven (63.6%) patients had primary transurethral valve resection or laser ablation and three patients (27.2%) had primary vesicostomies. One boy (9.1%) had penile urethrostomy with excision of urethral diverticulum. Two (18.2%) patients developed end-stage renal disease.
Conclusion: Anterior urethral valve is a rare congenital entity affecting the genitourinary system in males. Early urinary tract obstruction resulted in end-stage renal disease in 18% of our patient population. In our series, the complication rate and the evolution to renal failure are high and similar to patients with PUV. In patients with AUVs we recommend long-term follow up and close evaluation of patient’s bladder and renal function.
PMCID: PMC3864262  PMID: 24400281
anterior urethral valves; urethral diverticulum; end-stage renal disease; hydronephrosis; urinary tract obstruction
5.  Chronic Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Young Men Without Symptoms of Chronic Prostatitis: Urodynamic Analyses in 308 Men Aged 50 Years or Younger 
Korean Journal of Urology  2014;55(5):341-348.
We investigated the etiologies of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) and compared urodynamic characteristics between different diagnostic groups in young men with chronic LUTS.
Materials and Methods
We reviewed the medical records of 308 men aged 18 to 50 years who had undergone a urodynamic study for chronic LUTS (≥6 months) without symptoms suggestive of chronic prostatitis.
The men's mean age was 40.4 (±10.1) years and their mean duration of symptoms was 38.8 (±49.2) months. Urodynamic evaluation demonstrated voiding phase dysfunction in 62.1% of cases (primary bladder neck dysfunction [PBND] in 26.0%, dysfunctional voiding [DV] in 23.4%, and detrusor underactivity [DU]/acontractile detrusor [AD] in 12.7%) and a single storage phase dysfunction in 36.4% of cases (detrusor overactivity [DO] in 13.3%, small cystometric capacity in 17.9%, and reduced bladder sensation in 5.2%). Most of the demographic characteristics and clinical symptoms did not differ between these diagnostic groups. Whereas 53.9% of patients with voiding dysfunction had concomitant storage dysfunction, 69.6% of those with storage dysfunction had concomitant voiding dysfunction. Men with DV or DU/AD exhibited lower maximum cystometric capacity than did those with normal urodynamics. Low bladder compliance was most frequent among patients with PBND (10.0%, p=0.025). In storage dysfunctions, men with DO exhibited higher detrusor pressure during voiding than did those with other storage dysfunctions (p<0.01).
Because clinical symptoms are not useful for predicting the specific urodynamic etiology of LUTS in this population, urodynamic investigation can help to make an accurate diagnosis and, potentially, to guide appropriate treatment.
PMCID: PMC4026661  PMID: 24868339
Age groups; Men; Prevalence; Urinary bladder disease; Urodynamics
6.  Bladder management methods and urological complications in spinal cord injury patients 
Indian Journal of Orthopaedics  2011;45(2):141-147.
The optimal bladder management method should preserve renal function and minimize the risk of urinary tract complications. The present study is conducted to assess the overall incidence of urinary tract infections (UTI) and other urological complications in spinal cord injury patients (SCI), and to compare the incidence of these complications with different bladder management subgroups.
Materials and Methods:
545 patients (386 males and 159 females) of traumatic spinal cord injury with the mean age of 35.4±16.2 years (range, 18 – 73 years) were included in the study. The data regarding demography, bladder type, method of bladder management, and urological complications, were recorded. Bladder management methods included indwelling catheterization in 224 cases, clean intermittent catheterization (CIC) in 180 cases, condom drainage in 45 cases, suprapubic cystostomy in 24 cases, reflex voiding in 32 cases, and normal voiding in 40 cases. We assessed the incidence of UTI and bacteriuria as the number of episodes per hundred person-days, and other urological complications as percentages.
The overall incidence of bacteriuria was 1.70 / hundred person-days. The overall incidenceof urinary tract infection was 0.64 / hundered person-days. The incidence of UTI per 100 person-days was 2.68 for indwelling catheterization, 0.34 for CIC, 0.34 for condom drainage, 0.56 for suprapubic cystostomy, 0.34 for reflex voiding, and 0.32 for normal voiding. Other urological complications recorded were urethral stricture (n=66, 12.1%), urethritis (n=78, 14.3%), periurethral abscess (n=45, 8.2%), epididymorchitis (n=44, 8.07%), urethral false passage (n=22, 4.03%), urethral fistula (n=11, 2%), lithiasis (n=23, 4.2%), hematuria (n=44, 8.07%), stress incontinence (n=60, 11%), and pyelonephritis (n=6, 1.1%). Clean intermittent catheterization was associated with lower incidence of urological complications, in comparison to indwelling catheterization.
Urinary tract complications largely appeared to be confined to the lower urinary tract. The incidence of UTI and other urological complications is lower in patients on CIC in comparison to the patients on indwelling catheterizations. Encouraging CIC; early recognition and treatment of the UTI and urological complications; and a regular follow up is necessary to reduce the medical morbidity.
PMCID: PMC3051121  PMID: 21430869
Spinal cord injury; urinary bladder; clean intermittent catheterization; urological complications; indwelling catheterization
7.  Predictors of Voiding Dysfunction after Mid-urethral Sling Surgery for Stress Urinary Incontinence 
Postoperative voiding dysfunction is a bothersome complication after mid-urethral sling surgery. The current study presents multiple repeated postoperative voiding trials against a urine load of preoperative functional bladder capacity, as estimated by a preoperative frequency volume chart, to identify the relevance of preoperative and immediate factors to the outcome.
A total of 180 patients were enrolled from August 2008 to August 2011. Patients received mid-urethral sling surgery with a transobturator tape, with or without concomitant cystocele repair. Patients reported relevant medical histories and a 3-day frequency volume chart and underwent urodynamic studies. After surgery, patients were filled to their maximum bladder capacity as dictated by their frequency volume chart and performed the first voiding trial. Two subsequent voiding trials were performed after natural filling. Failure of any single voiding trial was considered failure. Patients who failed the final voiding trial received intermittent catheterization to follow-up. After screening for relevant factors with the use of univariate analyses, preoperative, surgical, and postoperative factors predicting outcome were estimated by logistic regression analysis.
The urine load at the voiding trial and the peak flow rate immediately preceding the voiding trial predicted voiding trial success in the multivariate analysis. Urine load and previous trial peak flow rate were relevant when tested against each individual voiding trial. Preoperative and surgical factors, such as age, parity, and concomitant cystocele repair, showed significance in the univariate analysis. Overall, 16.1% of patients who passed the first voiding trial failed on subsequent trials, whereas 36.8% of patients who failed the first voiding trial succeeded.
Postoperative voiding dysfunction is transient and is associated with the immediate voiding conditions following surgery. Close observation against urine overload in the bladder is important when weaning patients back to normal voiding conditions.
PMCID: PMC3321401  PMID: 22500251
Suburethral slings; Urinary retention; Urinary incontinence
8.  Micturitional disturbance in patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome 
OBJECTIVES—To examine the frequency and pathophysiology of micturitional disturbance in patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome.
METHODS—Micturitional symptoms were noted and neurological examinations made repeatedly during admission to hospital of patients with clinical and neurophysiologically definite Guillain-Barré syndrome. Urodynamic studies consisted of uroflowmetry, measurement of residual urine, urethral pressure profilometry, medium fill water cystometry, and external sphincter EMG.
RESULTS—Seven of 28 (25%) patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome showed micturitional disturbance. The symptoms included voiding difficulty in six, urinary retention in three, nocturnal urinary frequency in three, and urge incontinence in two. These micturitional symptoms appeared after weakness occurred, and improved gradually along with the neurological signs. All three patients who showed retention became able to urinate. Urodynamic studies were made on four symptomatic patients two of whom underwent repeated study. Disturbed bladder sensation was noted in one patient, bladder areflexia in one, and absence of the bulbocavernosus reflex in one. Cystometry showed decreased bladder volume in two and bladder overactivity in two, one of whom had urge urinary incontinence and the other urinary retention.
CONCLUSIONS—A quarter of the patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome tend to have micturitional disturbance. The patients studied had evacuation and storage disorders, as well as bladder areflexia and disturbed bladder sensation indicative of peripheral types of parasympathetic and somatic nerve dysfunction. Decreased bladder volume with bladder overactivity but no evidence of CNS involvement was also found, evidence that bladder overactivity also occurs in peripheral nerve lesions with probable pelvic nerve irritation.

PMCID: PMC2169821  PMID: 9408108
9.  Correlation between clinical presentation and urodynamic findings in women attending urogynecology clinic 
Journal of Mid-Life Health  2013;4(3):153-159.
Urodynamic studies objectively observe lower urinary tract function and dysfunction so that an appropriate treatment can be planned. In the present study, we tried to evaluate the role of urodynamic studies in the final diagnosis and management plan in patients attending an urogynecology clinic.
Materials and Methods:
This observational study was conducted in an urogynecology clinic. 202 women were included. After detailed history, pelvic examination and introital sonography these women were subjected to urodynamic study. During the filling cystometry detrusor activity, first desire to void and bladder capacity was recorded. This was followed by urethral pressure measurements, when functional urethral length, maximum urethral closure pressure and stress urethral pressure profile was recorded.
Most prevalent complaint was mixed urinary incontinence (33.17%), followed by stress incontinence (31.68%) and urge incontinence (13.37%). According to the standard urodynamic definition 66.33% were normal in the population studied. None of the urodynamic parameters individually or in combination were found to be very useful for establishing a diagnosis.
Establishment of the final diagnosis of urinary incontinence and planning of management should be based on detailed history, physical examination, bladder diaries, and careful interpretation of urodynamic data. Urodynamic study; however, doesn’t seem to be imperative to establish a diagnosis in uncomplicated cases where symptoms and signs are reliable and correlating.
PMCID: PMC3952406  PMID: 24672187
Mixed incontinence; stress incontinence; urge incontinence; urodynamic findings
10.  Sacral Nerve Stimulation For Urinary Urge Incontinence, Urgency-Frequency, Urinary Retention, and Fecal Incontinence 
Executive Summary
The aim of this review was to assess the effectiveness, safety, and cost of sacral nerve stimulation (SNS) to treat urinary urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, urinary retention, and fecal incontinence.
Background: Condition and Target Population
Urinary urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, urinary retention, and fecal incontinence are prevalent, yet rarely discussed, conditions. They are rarely discussed because patients may be uncomfortable disclosing their symptoms to a health professional or may be unaware that there are treatment options for these conditions. Briefly, urge incontinence is an involuntary loss of urine upon a sudden urge. Urgency-frequency is an uncontrollable urge to void, which results in frequent, small-volume voids. People with urgency-frequency may or may not also experience chronic pelvic pain. Urinary retention refers to the inability to void despite having the urge to void. It can be caused by a hypocontractile detrusor (weak or no bladder muscle contraction) or obstruction due to urethral overactivity. Fecal incontinence is a loss of voluntary bowel control.
The prevalence of urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, and urinary retention in the general population is 3.3% to 8.2%, and the prevalence of fecal incontinence is 1.4% to 1.9%. About three-quarters of these people will be successfully treated by behaviour and/or drug therapy. For those who do not respond to these therapies, the options for treatment are management with diapers or pads, or surgery. The surgical procedures are generally quite invasive, permanent, and are associated with complications. Pads and/or diapers are used throughout the course of treatment as different therapies are tried. Patients who respond successfully to treatment may still require pads or diapers, but to a lesser extent.
The Technology Being Reviewed: Sacral Nerve Stimulation
Sacral nerve stimulation is a procedure where a small device attached to an electrode is implanted in the abdomen or buttock to stimulate the sacral nerves in an attempt to manage urinary urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, urinary retention, and fecal incontinence. The device was originally developed to manage urinary urge incontinence; however, it has also been used in patients with urgency-frequency, urinary retention, and fecal incontinence. SNS is intended for patients who are refractory to behaviour, drug, and/or interventional therapy.
There are 2 phases in the SNS process: first, patients must undergo a test stimulation phase to determine if they respond to sacral nerve stimulation. If there is a 50% or greater improvement in voiding function, then the patient is considered a candidate for the next phase, implantation.
Review Strategy
The standard Medical Advisory Secretariat search strategy was used to locate international health technology assessments and English-language journal articles published from 2000 to November 2004. The Medical Advisory Secretariat also conducted Internet searches of Medscape (1) and the manufacturer’s website (2) to identify product information and recent reports on trials that were unpublished but that were presented at international conferences. In addition, the Web site Current Controlled Trials (3) was searched for ongoing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the role of sacral nerve stimulation in the management of voiding conditions.
Summary of Findings
Four health technology assessments were found that reviewed SNS in patients with urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, and/or urinary retention. One assessment was found that reviewed SNS in patients with fecal incontinence. The assessments consistently reported that SNS was an effective technology in managing these voiding conditions in patients who did not respond to drug or behaviour therapy. They also reported that there was a substantial complication profile associated with SNS. Complication rates ranged from 33% to 50%. However, none of the assessments reported that they found any incidences of permanent injury or death associated with the device.
The health technology assessments for urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, and urinary retention included (RCTs (level 2) as their primary source of evidence for their conclusions. The assessment of fecal incontinence based its conclusions on evidence from case series (level 4). Because there was level 2 data available for the use of SNS in patients with urinary conditions, the Medical Advisory Secretariat chose to review thoroughly the RCTs included in the assessments and search for publications since the assessments were released. However, for the health technology assessment for fecal incontinence, which contained only level 4 evidence, the Medical Advisory Secretariat searched for studies on SNS and fecal incontinence that were published since that assessment was released.
Urge Incontinence
Two RCTs were identified that compared SNS to no treatment in patients with refractory urge incontinence. Both RCTs reported significant improvements (> 50% improvement in voiding function) in the SNS group for number of incontinence episodes per day, number of pads used per day, and severity of incontinence episodes.
Urgency-Frequency (With or Without Chronic Pelvic Pain)
One RCT was identified that compared SNS to no treatment in patients with refractory urgency-frequency. The RCT reported significant improvements in urgency-frequency symptoms in the SNS group (average volume per void, detrusor pressure). In addition to the RCT, 1 retrospective review and 2 prospective case series were identified that measured pelvic pain associated with urgency-frequency in patients who underwent SNS. All 3 studies reported a significant decrease in pain at median follow-up.
Urinary Retention
One RCT was identified that compared SNS to no treatment in patients with refractory urinary retention. The RCT reported significant improvements in urinary retention in the SNS group compared to the control group for number of catheterizations required and number of voids per day. In addition to this RCT, 1 case series was also identified investigating SNS in women with urinary retention. This study also found that there were significant improvements in urinary retention after the women had received the SNS implants.
Fecal Incontinence
Three case series were identified that investigated the role of SNS in patients with fecal incontinence. All 3 reported significant improvements in fecal incontinence symptoms (number of incontinent episodes per week) after the patients received the SNS implants.
Long-Term Follow-up
None of the studies identified followed patients until the point of battery failure. Of the 6 studies identified describing the long-term follow-up of patients with SNS, follow-up periods ranged from 1.5 years to over 5 years. None of the long-term follow-up studies included patients with fecal incontinence. All of the studies reported that most of the patients who had SNS had at least a 50% improvement in voiding function (range 58%–77%). These studies also reported the number of patients who had their device explanted in the follow-up period. The rates of explantation ranged from 12% to 21%.
Safety, Complications, and Quality of Life
A 33% surgical revision rate was reported in an analysis of the safety of 3 RCTs comparing SNS to no treatment in patients with urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, or urinary retention. The most commonly reported adverse effects were pain at the implant site and lead migration. Despite the high rate of surgical revision, there were no reports of permanent injury or death in any of the studies or health technology assessments identified. Additionally, patients consistently said that they would recommend the procedure to a friend or family member.
Economic Analysis
One health technology assessment and 1 abstract were found that investigated the costing factors pertinent to SNS. The authors of this assessment did their own “indicative analysis” and found that SNS was not more cost-effective than using incontinence supplies. However, the assessment did not account for quality of life. Conversely, the authors of the abstract found that SNS was more cost-effective than incontinence supplies alone; however, they noted that in the first year after SNS, it is much more expensive than only incontinence supplies. This is owing to the cost of the procedure, and the adjustments required to make the device most effective. They also noted the positive effects that SNS had on quality of life.
Conclusions and Implications
In summary, there is level 2 evidence to support the effectiveness of SNS to treat people with urge incontinence, urgency-frequency, or urinary retention. There is level 4 evidence to support the effectiveness of SNS to treat people with fecal incontinence.
To qualify for SNS, people must meet the following criteria:
Be refractory to behaviour and/or drug therapy
Have had a successful test stimulation before implantation; successful test stimulation is defined by a 50% or greater improvement in voiding function based on the results of a voiding diary. Test stimulation periods range from 3 to 7 days for patients with urinary dysfunctions, and from 2 to 3 weeks for patients with fecal incontinence.
Be able to record voiding diary data, so that clinical results of the implantation can be evaluated.
Patients with stress incontinence, urinary retention due to obstruction and neurogenic conditions (such as diabetes with peripheral nerve involvement) are ineligible for sacral nerve stimulation.
Physicians will need to learn how to use the InterStim System for Urinary Control. Requirements for training include these:
Physicians must be experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of lower urinary tract disorders and should be trained in the implantation and use of the InterStim System for Urinary Control.
Training should include the following:
Participation in a seminar or workshop that includes instructional and laboratory training on SNS. This seminar should include a review of the evidence on SNS with emphasis on techniques to prevent adverse events.
Completion of proctoring by a physician experienced in SNS for the first 2 test stimulations and the first 2 implants
PMCID: PMC3382408  PMID: 23074472
11.  Plasticity in reflex pathways to the lower urinary tract following spinal cord injury 
Experimental neurology  2011;235(1):123-132.
The lower urinary tract has two main functions, storage and periodic expulsion of urine, that are regulated by a complex neural control system in the brain and lumbosacral spinal cord. This neural system coordinates the activity of two functional units in the lower urinary tract: (1) a reservoir (the urinary bladder) and (2) an outlet (consisting of bladder neck, urethra and striated muscles of the external urethra sphincter). During urine storage the outlet is closed and the bladder is quiescent to maintain a low intravesical pressure. During micturition the outlet relaxes and the bladder contracts to promote efficient release of urine. This reciprocal relationship between bladder and outlet is generated by reflex circuits some of which are under voluntary control. Experimental studies in animals indicate that the micturition reflex is mediated by a spinobulbospinal pathway passing through a coordination center (the pontine micturition center) located in the rostral brainstem. This reflex pathway is in turn modulated by higher centers in the cerebral cortex that are involved in the voluntary control of micturition. Spinal cord injury at cervical or thoracic levels disrupts voluntary control of voiding as well as the normal reflex pathways that coordinate bladder and sphincter function. Following spinal cord injury the bladder is initially areflexic but then becomes hyperreflexic due to the emergence of a spinal micturition reflex pathway. However the bladder does not empty efficiently because coordination between the bladder and urethral outlet is lost. Studies in animals indicate that dysfunction of the lower urinary tract after spinal cord injury is dependent in part on plasticity of bladder afferent pathways as well as reorganization of synaptic connections in the spinal cord. Reflex plasticity is associated with changes in the properties of ion channels and electrical excitability of afferent neurons and appears to be mediated in part by neurotrophic factors released in the spinal cord and/or the peripheral target organs.
PMCID: PMC3580860  PMID: 21596038
Micturition; Urinary bladder; Nerve growth factor; Urethra sphincter; Neurogenic detrusor overactivity; Detrusor-sphincter-dyssynergia; Afferent nerves; Synaptic remodeling; Neuropeptides; Urothelium
12.  Giant Leiomyoma of the Retzius Space: A Case Report 
Extrauterine leiomyoma is a very rare clinical condition; we report a case of leiomyoma of the Retzius space in a 49-year-old women who suffered for two years from bladder voiding symptoms characterized by dysuria, feeling of incomplete emptying, and pelvic pain. Clinical evaluation and abdominal and transvaginal ultrasound suggested the presence of a voluminous (about 10 cm in diameter) fibromyoma of the anterior uterus surface. The urodynamic evaluation demonstrated the presence of bladder outlet obstruction (voiding pressure greater than 20 cm H2O and maximum flow rate less than 12 mL/s) with a postvoiding urine residual equal to 80 mL; moreover, the presence of cystocele and urethral stricture was ruled out performing clinical evaluation, cystography, and cystourethroscopy. The patient underwent laparotomy to remove the uterine fibromyoma. Intraoperatively, a voluminous soft mass arising from the Retzius space was found; it was firmly adhered to the uterus with obliteration of vesicouterine pouch owing to severe adhesion to the anterior surface of uterus. The tumour was isolated, enucleated from the prevesical space, and removed; moreover, the patient became asymptomatic after surgery. In conclusion, leiomyoma of the Retzius space is a very rare benign tumour that should be considered in the presence of severe bladder voiding symptoms.
PMCID: PMC3621154  PMID: 23585976
13.  Posterior Urethral Valves; A single Center Experience 
Iranian Journal of Pediatrics  2013;23(5):531-535.
Posterior urethral valves (PUV) are the most common cause of bladder outlet obstruction in infancy that impair renal and bladder function. This study was planned to evaluate and record the various clinical presentations and management, complications, and surgical management and long-term outcome of PUV.
In a retrospective study, 98 patients who have been treated for PUV are evaluated in Mofid Children's Hospital from January 2007 to December 2012. Detailed history taken and paraclinical examinations were performed in each patient and diagnosis was confirmed by voiding-cysto-urethrography (VCUG). PUV had been ablated in 62 patients by electric hook, and diversion was performed in 42 (42.85%) cases. Data were analyzed by SPSS software version18.
Totally 98 patients with mean age at diagnosis 62 (±13) days were included in this study. Fifty seven cases had been catheterized within one to 6 days of life (mean age one day), PUV was ablated in 62 patients by electric hook, and diversion was performed in 42 cases. The most common symptom in our group was dribbling poor stream 51% and urinary tract infection (UTI) 40.8%. There was vesico-ureteral-reflux (VUR) in 61.2%, and hydronephrosis in 82.6%. Most common associated anomaly was kidney anomalies (multicystic kidney disease and renal agenesis/dysplasia) in 8 (8.2%) patients. Twenty patients had prenatal diagnosis of PUV. Complication occurred in three (3.1%) patients. Mortality occurred in 5 (5.1%) patients. Mean follow-up period was 3.4±1.2 years (1.5 months to 5 years).
Urinary drainage by feeding tube in early days of infancy, followed by valve ablation is the best treatment in PUV, and urinary diversion improves the outcome. VCUG is still the gold-standard imaging modality for documenting PUVs. The factors like renal dysplasia and UTI have their role in final outcome.
PMCID: PMC4006501  PMID: 24800012
PUV; Urinary Drainage; Valve Ablation; Urinary Diversion; Outcome; Children
14.  Optimal Management of High-Risk T1G3 Bladder Cancer: A Decision Analysis 
PLoS Medicine  2007;4(9):e284.
Controversy exists about the most appropriate treatment for high-risk superficial (stage T1; grade G3) bladder cancer. Immediate cystectomy offers the best chance for survival but may be associated with an impaired quality of life compared with conservative therapy. We estimated life expectancy (LE) and quality-adjusted life expectancy (QALE) for both of these treatments for men and women of different ages and comorbidity levels.
Methods and Findings
We evaluated two treatment strategies for high-risk, T1G3 bladder cancer using a decision-analytic Markov model: (1) Immediate cystectomy with neobladder creation versus (2) conservative management with intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) and delayed cystectomy in individuals with resistant or progressive disease. Probabilities and utilities were derived from published literature where available, and otherwise from expert opinion. Extensive sensitivity analyses were conducted to identify variables most likely to influence the decision. Structural sensitivity analyses modifying the base case definition and the triggers for cystectomy in the conservative therapy arm were also explored. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis was used to assess the joint uncertainty of all variables simultaneously and the uncertainty in the base case results. External validation of model outputs was performed by comparing model-predicted survival rates with independent published literature. The mean LE of a 60-y-old male was 14.3 y for immediate cystectomy and 13.6 y with conservative management. With the addition of utilities, the immediate cystectomy strategy yielded a mean QALE of 12.32 y and remained preferred over conservative therapy by 0.35 y. Worsening patient comorbidity diminished the benefit of early cystectomy but altered the LE-based preferred treatment only for patients over age 70 y and the QALE-based preferred treatment for patients over age 65 y. Sensitivity analyses revealed that patients over the age of 70 y or those strongly averse to loss of sexual function, gastrointestinal dysfunction, or life without a bladder have a higher QALE with conservative therapy. The results of structural or probabilistic sensitivity analyses did not change the preferred treatment option. Model-predicted overall and disease-specific survival rates were similar to those reported in published studies, suggesting external validity.
Our model is, to our knowledge, the first of its kind in bladder cancer, and demonstrated that younger patients with high-risk T1G3 bladder had a higher LE and QALE with immediate cystectomy. The decision to pursue immediate cystectomy versus conservative therapy should be based on discussions that consider patient age, comorbid status, and an individual's preference for particular postcystectomy health states. Patients over the age of 70 y or those who place high value on sexual function, gastrointestinal function, or bladder preservation may benefit from a more conservative initial therapeutic approach.
Using a Markov model, Shabbir Alibhai and colleagues develop a decision analysis comparing cystectomy with conservative treatment for high-risk superficial bladder cancer depending on patient age, comorbid conditions, and preferences.
Editors' Summary
Every year, about 67,000 people in the US develop bladder cancer. Like all cancers, bladder cancer arises when a single cell begins to grow faster than normal, loses its characteristic shape, and moves into surrounding tissues. Most bladder cancers develop from cells that line the bladder (“transitional” cells) and most are detected before they spread out of this lining. These superficial or T1 stage cancers can be removed by transurethral resection of bladder tumor (TURBT). The urologist (a specialist who treats urinary tract problems) passes a small telescope into the bladder through the urethra (the tube through which urine leaves the body) and removes the tumor. If the tumor cells look normal under a microscope (so-called normal histology), the cancer is unlikely to return; if they have lost their normal appearance, the tumor is given a “G3” histological grade, which indicates a high risk of recurrence.
Why Was This Study Done?
The best treatment for T1G3 bladder cancer remains controversial. Some urologists recommend immediate radical cystectomy— surgical removal of the bladder, the urethra, and other nearby organs. This treatment often provides a complete cure but can cause serious short-term health problems and affects long-term quality of life. Patients often develop sexual dysfunction or intestinal (gut) problems and sometimes find it hard to live with a reconstructed bladder. The other recommended treatment is immunotherapy with bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG, bacteria that are also used to vaccinate against tuberculosis). Long-term survival is not always as good with this conservative treatment but it is less likely than surgery to cause short-term illness or to reduce quality of life. In this study, the researchers have used decision analysis (a systematic evaluation of the important factors affecting a decision) to determine whether immediate cystectomy or conservative therapy is the optimal treatment for patients with T1G3 bladder cancer. Decision analysis allowed the researchers to account for quality-of-life factors while comparing the health benefits of each treatment for T1G3 bladder cancer.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
Using a decision analysis model called a Markov model, the researchers calculated the months of life gained, and the quality of life expected to result, from each of the two treatments. To estimate the life expectancy (LE) associated with each treatment, the researchers incorporated the published probabilities of various outcomes of each treatment into their model. To estimate quality-adjusted life expectancy (QALE, the number of years of good quality life), they incorporated “utilities,” measures of relative satisfaction with outcomes. (A utility of 1 represents perfect health; death is assigned a value of 0, and outcomes considered less than ideal, but better than death, fall in between). For a sexually potent 60-year-old man with bladder cancer but no other illnesses, the average LE predicted by the model was nearly eight months longer with immediate cystectomy than with conservative treatment (both LEs predicted by this model matched those seen in clinical trials); the average QALE with cystectomy was 4.2 months longer than with conservative treatment. Having additional diseases decreased the benefit of immediate cystectomy but the treatment still gave a longer LE until the patient reached 70 years old, when conservative treatment became better. For QALE, this change in optimal treatment appeared at age 65. Finally, conservative treatment gave a higher QALE than immediate cystectomy for patients concerned about preserving sexual function or averse to living with intestinal problems or a reconstructed bladder.
What Do These Findings Mean?
As with all mathematical models, these results depend on the assumptions included in the model. In particular, because published probability and utility values are not available for some of the possible outcomes of the two treatments, the LE and QALE calculations could be inaccurate. Also, assigning numerical ratings to life experiences is generally something of a simplification, which could affect the reliability of the QALE (but not the LE) results. Nevertheless, these findings provide useful guidance for urologists trying to balance the benefits of immediate cystectomy or conservative treatment against the potential short-term and long-term effects of these treatments on patients' quality of life. Specifically, the results indicate that decisions on treatment for T1G3 bladder cancer should be based on a consideration of the patient's age and any coexisting disease coupled with detailed discussions with the patient about their attitudes regarding the possible health-related effects of cystectomy.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at
MedlinePlus encyclopedia page on bladder cancer (in English and Spanish)
Information for patients and professionals from the US National Cancer Institute on bladder cancer (in English and Spanish)
Information for patients on bladder cancer from the UK charity Cancerbackup
Online course on Decision Analysis in Health Care from George Mason University
PMCID: PMC1989749  PMID: 17896857
15.  Detection of Intracellular Bacterial Communities in Human Urinary Tract Infection 
PLoS Medicine  2007;4(12):e329.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are one of the most common bacterial infections and are predominantly caused by uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC). While UTIs are typically considered extracellular infections, it has been recently demonstrated that UPEC bind to, invade, and replicate within the murine bladder urothelium to form intracellular bacterial communities (IBCs). These IBCs dissociate and bacteria flux out of bladder facet cells, some with filamentous morphology, and ultimately establish quiescent intracellular reservoirs that can seed recurrent infection. This IBC pathogenic cycle has not yet been investigated in humans. In this study we sought to determine whether evidence of an IBC pathway could be found in urine specimens from women with acute UTI.
Methods and Findings
We collected midstream, clean-catch urine specimens from 80 young healthy women with acute uncomplicated cystitis and 20 asymptomatic women with a history of UTI. Investigators were blinded to culture results and clinical history. Samples were analyzed by light microscopy, immunofluorescence, and electron microscopy for evidence of exfoliated IBCs and filamentous bacteria. Evidence of IBCs was found in 14 of 80 (18%) urines from women with UTI. Filamentous bacteria were found in 33 of 80 (41%) urines from women with UTI. None of the 20 urines from the asymptomatic comparative group showed evidence of IBCs or filaments. Filamentous bacteria were present in all 14 of the urines with IBCs compared to 19 (29%) of 66 samples with no evidence of IBCs (p < 0.001). Of 65 urines from patients with E. coli infections, 14 (22%) had evidence of IBCs and 29 (45%) had filamentous bacteria, while none of the gram-positive infections had IBCs or filamentous bacteria.
The presence of exfoliated IBCs and filamentous bacteria in the urines of women with acute cystitis suggests that the IBC pathogenic pathway characterized in the murine model may occur in humans. The findings support the occurrence of an intracellular bacterial niche in some women with cystitis that may have important implications for UTI recurrence and treatment.
Analyzing urine specimens from women with bladder infections, Scott Hultgren and colleagues find evidence for intracellular bacterial communities, which have been associated with recurrent urinary tract infections in mice.
Editors' Summary
Every year, nearly 10 million people in the United States—mainly women—consult their doctors because of a urinary tract infection (UTI). UTIs occur when bacteria living in the gut—usually Escherichia coli—get transferred to the opening of the urethra (the tube through which urine leaves the body), as may occur during sexual intercourse. From here, the bacteria can move into the bladder (the muscular sac that stores urine until it is excreted) where they can multiply and cause cystitis (inflammation of the bladder). If cystitis is untreated, the bacteria can move further up the urinary tract and infect the kidneys (which make urine). Symptoms of UTIs include pain when urinating, frequent and intense urges to urinate, and cloudy urine. UTIs are diagnosed by looking for bacteria and white blood cells (that fight infection) in the urine; the usual treatment is a short course of antibiotics.
Why Was This Study Done?
Half the women who get a UTI will have another attack within a year, often caused by the same bacterial strain. It is generally thought that these strains persist in the gut and reinfect the urinary tract, but recent animal studies suggest an additional explanation. In mice, E. coli strains that cause UTIs can invade the cells lining the bladder. Here, they replicate and form so-called intracellular bacterial communities (IBCs). Many of the infected cells fall off the bladder's surface into the urine, but IBCs also release bacteria, many of which have a long, slender filamentous appearance (E. coli usually have a simple rod-like shape). Immune system cells normally kill bacteria in the urine but cannot deal with filamentous bacteria. In mice, these bacteria can then reinfect the lining of the bladder and establish long-lasting intracellular reservoirs of bacteria that are protected from antibiotics and probably from the host immune system. If this IBC cycle occurs in people, it might explain why some UTIs recur and might suggest ways to manage these recurrences. In this study, therefore, the researchers have investigated whether there is an IBC cycle in women.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers collected urine from 80 young women with cystitis and from 20 women with no symptoms who had had cystitis previously. They identified the type of bacteria in each sample and looked for IBCs and filamentous bacteria using light microscopy, electron microscopy, and a technique called immunofluorescence. None of the women without cystitis had IBCs or filamentous bacteria in their urine, but IBCs were found in nearly 1 in 5, and filamentous bacteria were in nearly half, of urine samples from the women with cystitis. All the urine samples that contained IBCs also contained filamentous bacteria. All of the women with IBCs and most of them with filamentous bacteria had E coli infections. Finally, the women with IBCs and filamentous bacteria in their urine had higher bacterial counts in their urine and had symptoms of cystitis for slightly longer than those without.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that the IBC cycle identified in mice occurs in at least some women with UTIs and may be associated with infections caused by E. coli. Because only one urine sample was collected from each woman, the cycle may be more common than these findings suggest. That is, in some cases the sample may have been taken at a time when there were no IBCs or filamentous bacteria in the urine. Also, because samples were taken at only one point in time, this study does not show whether intracellular bacteria persist and contribute to recurrent UTIs in women, as they appear to do in mice. To provide more information about the IBC cycle in people and its clinical relevance, additional studies are needed to examine whether there are any associations between the presence of IBCs and filamentous bacteria and treatment responses and recurrence, and to examine what is actually happening in the bladder during UTI. Until such studies are done, the clinical implications of the current findings remain uncertain. However, one possibility is that the presence of IBCs and filamentous bacteria in urine might identify people who would benefit from longer treatment with antibiotics or treatment with antibiotics that kill bacteria inside human cells.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at
The MedlinePlus encyclopedia contains pages on urinary tract infection, on cystitis, and on recurrent cystitis (in English and Spanish)
Information is available from the UK National Health Service Direct health encyclopedia on urinary tract infections and on cystitis
The US National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse provides information on urinary tract infections (in English and Spanish)
Information is available from the American Urological Association on urinary tract infections in adults
PMCID: PMC2140087  PMID: 18092884
16.  Long-term nephrostomy in an adult male spinal cord injury patient who had normal upper urinary tracts but developed bilateral hydronephrosis following penile sheath drainage: pyeloplasty and balloon dilatation of ureteropelvic junction proved futile: a case report 
Cases Journal  2009;2:9335.
The consequences of spinal cord injury upon urinary bladder are readily recognised by patients and health care professionals, since neuropathic bladder manifests itself as urinary incontinence, or retention of urine. But health care professionals and persons with spinal cord injury may not be conversant with neuropathic dysmotility affecting the ureter and renal pelvis. We report an adult male patient with spinal cord injury, who developed bilateral hydronephrosis after he started managing neuropathic bladder by penile sheath drainage.
Case presentation
A male patient, born in 1971, sustained spinal cord injury following a motorbike accident in September 1988. In November 1988, intravenous urography showed normal upper tracts. He was advised spontaneous voiding with 2-3 catheterisations a day. In February 1995, this patient developed fever, chills and vomiting. Blood urea: 23.7 mmol/L; creatinine: 334 umol/L. Ultrasound revealed marked hydronephrosis of right kidney and mild hydronephrosis of left kidney. Bilateral nephrostomy was performed in March 1995. Right pyeloplasty was performed in May 1998. In July 2005, this patient developed urine infection and was admitted to a local hospital with fever and rigors. He developed septicaemia and required ventilation. Ultrasound examination of abdomen revealed bilateral hydronephrosis and multiple stones in left kidney. Percutaneous nephrostomy was performed on both sides. Subsequently, extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy of left renal calculi was carried out. Right nephrostomy tube slipped out in January 2006; percutaneous nephrostomy was performed again. In June 2006, left ureteric antegrade stenting was performed and nephrostomy tube was removed. Currently, right kidney is drained by percutaneous nephrostomy and left kidney is drained by ureteric stent. This patient has indwelling urethral catheter.
It is possible that regular intermittent catheterisations along with anticholinergic medication right from the time of rehabilitation after this patient sustained paraplegia might have prevented the series of urological complications. Key components to successful management of external drainage of kidney in this patient are: [1] use of size 14 French pigtail catheter for long-term nephrostomy, [2] anchoring the catheter to skin to with Percufix catheter cuff to prevent accidental tug [3], replacing the nephrostomy dressing once a week by the same team in order to provide continuity of care, and [4] changing nephrostomy catheter every six months by a senior radiologist.
PMCID: PMC2803994  PMID: 20062594
17.  Prostatectomy using different lasers for the treatment of benign prostate hyperplasia in aging males 
Endoscopic lasers have become a treatment option for benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). The study reported here sought to elucidate the benefits and drawbacks of different laser systems in the treatment of patients with BPH.
The study enrolled 741 patients diagnosed with lower urinary tract symptoms secondary to BPH during the period January 2005 to December 2011. The techniques used in the study were photoselective vaporization of the prostate, thulium laser prostatectomy, and diode laser prostatectomy. Patients were assigned to one of three groups according to the type of laser treatment they received. Outcomes were evaluated using the International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), quality of life, maximal urinary flow rate, post-voiding residual urine volume, and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level.
The baseline characteristics of patients who received diode laser prostatectomy show a significant elevated risk and high American Society of Anesthesiology score (P=0.001). Operative time and catheter removal time differed significantly between the three groups (P=0.001). No cases were converted to transurethral resection of the prostate intraoperatively due to bleeding (P=0.142). Among the three groups, there were no significant differences in maximal flow rate, lower post-void residual urine, and postoperative PSA level during the entire follow-up period (P<0.05). Further, no significant differences in postoperative IPSS, quality of life, or bladder neck contracture (P=0.23) were observed. However, a significant difference was observed with regard to prolonged use of Foley catheters and prolonged hospital stay among patients in the diode laser group (P=0.001).
Laser prostatectomies are effective in dealing with lower urinary tract symptoms. Early subjective functional results (maximal flow rate, IPSS, and post-void residual urine) appeared the same as those obtained following laser prostatectomy. Thus, it appears that lasers are safe and effective as long as the patients are carefully selected for treatment.
PMCID: PMC3832386  PMID: 24255595
prostate gland; laser prostatectomy; diode laser; thulium laser; photoselective vaporization of the prostate
18.  Complications of Primary Realignment of Posterior Urethral Disruption After Pelvic Trauma 
Trauma Monthly  2014;19(2):e13523.
There are two fundamental selections for the management of traumatic posterior urethral injury, delayed repair or early primary realignment.
The aim of this study was to assess the complications of primary realignment of posterior urethral disruption.
Patients and Methods:
This retrospective descriptive cross-sectional study was done at the Shohada-ye Ashayer University Hospital in Khorramabad. All male patients admitted to the hospital with posterior urethral disruption and had undergone primary realignment of the urinary tract between 2003 and 2010 were included. Primary realignment of the urinary tract was done up to 24 hours after injury. The patients underwent open cystostomy and then a nelaton catheter was inserted from the bladder neck to the distal urethra anterogradely. Upon voiding from the catheter, another nelaton catheter was fixed to it and was pulled into the bladder. The catheter was removed if the urethra was intact in the retrograde urethrography after three weeks. The patients were followed for six months. The data were presented as mean and percentage.
A total of 24 patients were evaluated while seven, eleven, four, and two patients were aged under 20, 20 to 39, 40 to 59, and over 60 years old, respectively. Thirteen patients (54.16%) had urinary tract stenosis after the primary realignment. Erectile dysfunction was reported in three of them. Urinary incontinence did not occur in patients without stenosis.
Early primary realignment of posterior urethral disruption had significant complications. In this study we did not have a control group, thus we could not compare the complications of delayed repair and early primary realignment of the posterior urethra. We recommend further case-control studies with larger sample size.
PMCID: PMC4080612  PMID: 25032146
Urethral Stricture; Erectile Dysfunction; Urinary Incontinence
19.  Airway management of a child with frontometaphyseal dysplasia (Gorlin Cohen syndrome) 
Frontometaphyseal dysplasia (FMD), also called Gorlin-Cohen syndrome, is a rare hereditary X-linked dominant craniotubular bone disorder. The presentation describes the airway management of a 2-year-old child suffering from FMD with significant retrognathia, posted for major long bone corrective osteotomy. Induction with a combination of dexmedetomidine and ketamine preceded a successful endotracheal intubation under spontaneous ventilation.
PMCID: PMC4009657  PMID: 24803775
Dexmedetomidine; difficult airway; frontometaphyseal dysplasia; ketamine
20.  Voiding dysfunction after repair of giant trigonal vesicovaginal or urethrovesicovaginal fistulae: A need for long-term follow-up 
Urodynamic findings of lower urinary tract of women presenting with voiding dysfunction after successful repair of complex trigonal vesicovaginal fistulas at our institute are presented.
Materials and Methods:
In this retrospective case series, women presenting with voiding dysfunction after successful repair of obstetric fistulae were evaluated. In addition of standard clinical evaluation with history and clinical examination, all underwent kidney-ureter-bladder ultrasonography, renal function test, urine culture, and multichannel urodynamics. The latter consisted of free uroflowmetry, filling and voiding cystometry.
Five women (median age 35 years; range 30–45) presented with difficulty in voiding after the successful repair; two presented within 1 year and 3 after 10 years. The latter three presented with bilateral hydroureteronephrosis; one of these had chronic kidney disease (CKD) grade IV at presentation. Urodynamics (UDS) of all patients revealed poor detrusor compliance (median 11 ml/cm H2O; range 5–22), high-end filling detrusor pressures (median 41 cm H2O; range 11–46) and no detrusor overactivity. All patients attempted voiding with abdominal straining; with little contribution of detrusor contraction (median 6 cm H2O; range 0–9). Two patients could not void during the study, one with Tanagho reconstruction and another with CKD.
Even after successful repair, patients with complex trigonal or urethra-vesicovaginal fistulae warrant indefinite long-term follow-up for voiding dysfunction in view of possibility of developing poorly compliant bladder.
PMCID: PMC3579119  PMID: 23450711
Detrusor compliance; giant vesicovaginal fistula; neurogenic bladder
21.  The Studer Orthotopic Neobladder: Long-Term (More Than 10 Years) Functional Outcomes, Urodynamic Features, and Complications 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2013;54(3):690-695.
Radical cystectomy and urinary diversion are the standard treatment for invasive bladder cancer. We analyzed the long-term (>10 years postoperatively) functional outcomes, complications, and urodynamic findings in a single center series of patients who underwent cystectomy and a Studer ileal neobladder substitution.
Materials and Methods
A retrospective chart review of 108 Studer pouches constructed during 1990 and 2011 was performed. Data were analyzed in terms of long-term (>10 years) outcomes. Complications, incontinence, voiding difficulties, upper urinary tract changes, overall satisfaction, and urodynamic findings of the reservoir were obtained.
We evaluated 19 out of 50 patients who had lived for over 10 years postoperatively. Another 31 patients were not traced: 7 patients died following recurrence, 15 died due to exacerbation of a comorbidity, and 9 patients were lost to follow-up. Concerning complications, 6 patients had an atrophied kidney, 5 patients had moderate hydronephrosis, 5 patients had chronic recurrence of pylelonephritis, and 2 patients had voiding difficulty because of bladder neck stricture due to clean intermittent catheterization. One patient underwent an operation due to intestinal obstruction. Seven patients had incontinence; all 7 patients showed intermittently at night and 2 patients even in waking hours. Maximum bladder capacity was 484.1±119.2 mL, maximum flow rate was 13.6±9.7 mL/sec, and post-void residual urine volume was 146.8±82.7 mL.
Long-term outcomes with the Studer orthotopic ileal neobladder have an acceptable complication rate and good functional results. However, potential adverse outcomes such as renal deterioration, dysfunctional voiding should also be considered.
PMCID: PMC3635617  PMID: 23549816
Urinary diversion; cystectomy; urinary bladder neoplasms
22.  Substandard urological care of elderly patients with spinal cord injury: an unrecognized epidemic? 
We report the anecdotal observation of substandard urological care of elderly paraplegic patients in the community suffering from long-term sequelae of spinal cord injuries. This article is designed to increase awareness of a problem that is likely underreported and may represent the ‘tip of the iceberg’ related to substandard care provided to the vulnerable population of elderly patients with chronic neurological impairment.
A registered Nurse changed the urethral catheter of an 80-year-old-male with paraplegia; patient developed profuse urethral bleeding and septicaemia. Ultrasound revealed balloon of Foley catheter located in membranous urethra. Flexible cystoscopy was performed and a catheter was inserted over a guide wire. Urethral bleeding recurred 12 days later. This patient was discharged after protracted stay in spinal unit. A nurse changed urethral catheter in an 82-year-old male with paraplegia. The catheter did not drain urine; patient developed pain in lower abdomen. The balloon of Foley catheter was visible behind the urethral meatus, which indicated that the balloon had been inflated in penile urethra. The catheter was removed and a 16 French Foley catheter was inserted per urethra. About 1300 ml of urine was drained. A 91-year-old lady with paraplegia underwent routine ultrasound examination of urinary tract by a Consultant Radiologist, who reported a 4 cm × 3 cm soft tissue mass in the urinary bladder. Cystoscopy was performed without anaesthesia in lithotomy position. Cystoscopy revealed normal bladder mucosa; no stones; no tumour. Following cystoscopy, the right knee became swollen and there was deformity of lower third of right thigh. X-ray revealed fracture of lower third of right femur. Femoral fracture was treated by immobilisation in full plaster cast. Follow-up ultrasound examination of urinary tract, performed by a senior Radiologist, revealed normal outline of urinary bladder with no tumour or calculus.
The adverse outcomes can be averted if elderly spinal cord injury patients are treated by senior, experienced health professionals, who are familiar with changes in body systems due to old age, compounded further by spinal cord injury.
PMCID: PMC3899400  PMID: 24447309
Spinal cord injury; Elderly patients; Substandard care
The Journal of Urology  2005;174(5):1743-1748.
We provide an overview of the medical literature supporting the combined use of muscarinic and α-adrenergic antagonist therapy for the treatment of voiding dysfunction.
Materials and Methods
The MEDLINE database (1966 to 2004) of the United States National Library of Medicine was searched for pertinent studies.
Although the mechanism of action of α-adrenergic antagonist therapy for voiding dysfunction has traditionally been assumed to be relaxation of the periurethral, prostatic and bladder neck smooth muscle, substantial evidence supports action at extraprostatic sites involved in micturition, including the bladder dome smooth muscle, peripheral ganglia, spinal cord and brain. Likewise the mechanism of action of anticholinergic therapy has been traditionally assumed to be inhibition of the M3 muscarinic receptor subtypes that mediate normal bladder contractions. However, M2 receptor mediates hypertrophied bladder contractions and there is evidence for an M2 component to the suprasacral control of voiding.
Based on the physiology of α-adrenergic and muscarinic receptors the inhibition of each one would be expected to be more beneficial than that of either alone because they would work on 2 components of detrusor function. Patients who would likely benefit from this combination therapy are men with lower urinary tract symptoms, women with urgency/frequency syndrome (overactive bladder), patients with uninhibited bladder contractions due to neurogenic bladder, and patients with pelvic pain and voiding symptoms, ie interstitial cystitis and chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome.
PMCID: PMC3277797  PMID: 16217275
bladder; prostate; adrenergic alpha-antagonists; muscarinic antagonists; urination disorders
24.  Bladder augmentation and continent urinary diversion in boys with posterior urethral valves 
Posterior urethral valve (PUV) is a condition that leads to characteristic changes in the bladder and upper urinary tract. Dysfunction of the bladder such as a hyperreflective, hypertonic, and small capacity bladder as well as sphincter incompetence and/or myogenic failure should be adequately treated. Poor compliance/small bladder could be treated with anticholinergics, but bladder augmentation will probably be indicated. Although bladder reconstruction with gastrointestinal segments can be associated with multiple complications, including metabolic disorders, calculus formation, mucus production, enteric fistulas, and malignancy formation, enterocystoplasty is still the gold standard. In contrast to a neuropathic or exstrophic bladder, augmentation of the valve bladder allows spontaneous voiding without significant residual urine in the majority of cases, but some require CIC (clean intermittent cathterization). Augmentation cystoplasty is also an efficient approach in those children who will require kidney transplantation in the future.
PMCID: PMC3921740  PMID: 24578902
urinary bladder; valve bladder; bladder augmentation
25.  Diurnal Variation in Urodynamics of Rat 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(8):e12298.
In humans, the storage and voiding functions of the urinary bladder have a characteristic diurnal variation, with increased voiding during the day and urine storage during the night. However, in animal models, the daily functional differences in urodynamics have not been well-studied. The goal of this study was to identify key urodynamic parameters that vary between day and night. Rats were chronically instrumented with an intravesical catheter, and bladder pressure, voided volumes, and micturition frequency were measured by continuous filling cystometry during the light (inactive) or dark (active) phases of the circadian cycle. Cage activity was recorded by video during the experiment. We hypothesized that nocturnal rats entrained to a standard 12:12 light:dark cycle would show greater ambulatory activity and more frequent, smaller volume micturitions in the dark compared to the light. Rats studied during the light phase had a bladder capacity of 1.44±0.21 mL and voided every 8.2±1.2 min. Ambulatory activity was lower in the light phase, and rats slept during the recording period, awakening only to urinate. In contrast, rats studied during the dark were more active, had a lower bladder capacities (0.65±0.18 mL), and urinated more often (every 3.7±0.9 min). Average bladder pressures were not significantly different between the light and dark (13.40±2.49 and 12.19±2.85 mmHg, respectively). These results identify a day-night difference in bladder capacity and micturition frequency in chronically-instrumented nocturnal rodents that is phase-locked to the normal circadian locomotor activity rhythm of the animal. Furthermore, since it has generally been assumed that the daily hormonal regulation of renal function is a major driver of the circadian rhythm in urination, and few studies have addressed the involvement of the lower urinary tract, these results establish the bladder itself as a target for circadian regulation.
PMCID: PMC2924395  PMID: 20808873

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