Transurethral sphincterotomy provides significant relief in autonomic dysreflexia in spinal cord injured male patients: long-term followup results

Inder Perkash
Journal of Urology 2007, 177 (3): 1026-9

PURPOSE: An evaluation of the results of transurethral sphincterotomy in spinal cord injured patients for the relief of autonomic dysreflexia is presented.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study describes experience with the treatment of 46 consecutive spinal cord injured males presenting with frequent symptoms of autonomic dysreflexia and inadequate voiding. The selection criteria include patients injured above the thoracic 6 level with subjective symptoms of autonomic dysreflexia who did not want to be catheterized or were unable to perform intermittent catheterization. Patients were studied with complex urodynamics before and at least 3 months after undergoing transurethral sphincterotomy. During cystometrogram the maximum increase in systolic and diastolic blood pressure was recorded. After transurethral sphincterotomy patients were followed for a mean of 5.4+/-3.1 years (range 1 to 12).

RESULTS: There was subjective relief in autonomic dysreflexia following transurethral sphincterotomy in all patients, which correlated well with a significant decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure (p<0.0001). Mean decrease in maximal systolic and diastolic blood pressure after transurethral sphincterotomy was 55+/-25 and 29+/-17 mm Hg, respectively. Mean post-void residual urine decreased significantly from 233+/-151 to 136+/-0.34 ml after transurethral sphincterotomy. However, there was no significant change in mean maximum voiding pressures.

CONCLUSIONS: Blood pressure monitoring during cystometrogram provides an objective assessment of the presence of autonomic dysreflexia due to neurogenic bladder dysfunction, enabling better therapeutic management to control autonomic dysreflexia. Persistence of significant autonomic dysreflexia needs urodynamic evaluation if other factors for autonomic dysreflexia have been excluded.

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