Treatment of proximal hypospadias with a tubularized island flap urethroplasty and the onlay technique: a comparative study

M Castañón, E Muñoz, R Carrasco, J Rodó, L Morales
Journal of Pediatric Surgery 2000, 35 (10): 1453-5

BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: The onlay island flap urethroplasty was first described in the repair of mid and distal penile hypospadias. Since then, this technique has been increasingly used in more severe cases of hypospadias, because of the complications of tubularized flaps, mainly megaurethra and proximal anastomotic strictures. The aim of this study was to compare the morbidity of these 2 techniques.

METHODS: Between April 1994 and December 1998, 80 patients underwent surgical treatment for hypospadias. A tubularized island flap (Ducketttechnique) was performed in 42 cases, and the onlay island flap technique was used in 38 patients. The authors retrospectively compared the complication rate and type of these 2 procedures.

RESULTS: Altogether, fistula was the most frequent complication without any significant difference between the 2 groups (21.4% for Duckett technique and 18.4% for onlay repair; P > .05). However, the anastomotic stricture was much more common in the tubularized flap group (7.14% v 2.63%; P < .05). Moreover, a megaurethra was found only in the Duckett technique group (4.7%). There was no case of chordee recurrence, but 6 patients (15.7%) treated with the onlay technique required urethrolysis including dissection of the chord behind the urethral plate, and in the other 3 patients of the same group (7.9%), a dorsal Nesbit plication also was necessary. In all these cases, the urethroplasty included an island cutaneous flap to provide ventral coverage to the neourethra.

CONCLUSIONS: The authors conclude that both techniques present similar complications. However, proximal strictures and megaurethra are more common after the Duckett technique. This procedure is of choice in patients with scrotal hypospadias. Conversely, the onlay repair should be completed with other procedures (urethrolysis, dorsal Nesbit plication) to obtain good results in patients with severe degree of chordee.

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