JOURNAL ARTICLE
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One-stage repair of long bulbar urethral strictures using augmented Russell dorsal strip anastomosis: outcome of 234 cases.

European Urology 2008 Februrary
OBJECTIVES: Long bulbar urethral strictures (>2 cm) are not amenable to stricture excision and primary anastomosis procedure, which may result in a short urethra and chordee formation. For such strictures many procedures have been advocated including stricturotomy with subsequent graft or flap onlay, augmented anastomosis, and staged procedures, which is a combination of the Russell graft. We present our 10-yr experience with the augmented Russell procedure using a ventral onlay buccal mucosal patch graft for treatment of long bulbar urethral strictures not amenable to excision and primary anastomosis.

METHODS: A total of 234 patients diagnosed by urethrograms as having long bulbar urethral strictures (mean, 4.2 cm) were managed by the augmented Russell urethroplasty. The procedure included excision of most of the diseased segment (mean, 2.8 cm) and anastomosis of a dorsal strip leaving an oval ventral defect. Augmentation was done in all patients using a buccal mucosa patch graft (mean, 4.7 cm).

RESULTS: Mean follow-up was 36 mo. Urethrograms were done at 3 wk and 3 and 6 mo postoperatively and if the patients were symptomatic thereafter. Urethrocystoscopy was performed at 12 and 18 mo. A total of 223 patients completed the follow-up protocol; the overall success rate was 93.7% with 14 (6.3%) patients showing stricture recurrence at different intervals postoperatively. Ten patients in the failure group were successfully managed by single visualized internal urethrotomy (VIU), whereas the other four patients were treated by ventral penile pedicled flap. Postoperative dribbling of urine was noticed by 90 patients (40.4%) and temporary perioral numbness in most patients; no major donor site complications were noted in our series.

CONCLUSION: The augmented Russell technique is beneficial for long bulbar urethral strictures; 93.7% of the patients were stricture free. In the bulbar region, both ventral and dorsal onlays are applicable with nearly equal success rates. The buccal mucosa patch graft offers excellent material for augmentation.

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