JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Evaluation of male anterior urethral strictures by ultrasonography compared with retrograde urethrography.

BACKGROUND: Abnormality of the male anterior urethra is common and is routinely assessed by contrast X-ray retrograde urethrogram (RUG). There is paucity of knowledge about the efficacy or findings at ultrasound of the anterior urethra in patients with urethral stricture in our setting.

OBJECTIVE: To compare the efficacy of ultrasound to that of RUG in male patients diagnosed as having urethral strictures

METHOD: In order to compare the efficacy of ultrasound to that of RUG thirteen male patients diagnosed as having urethral strictures were prospectively examined using high resolution sonourethrography (SUG) and X-ray retrograde urethrogram between June and November 2004.

RESULTS: The ages of the patients ranged from 32 to 66 years (with a mean of 49.8). All the 13 patients scanned showed abnormalities of the anterior urethra, 11 (84.6%) of which had strictures. Ten out of the 11 strictures were detected on both sonourethrography and RUG. One patient who was negative on RUG showed a stricture only 2.3 mm thick on SUG. The urethral mucosa, thickness of the urethral wall at the stricture level and the lengths of the strictures were well assessed on sonourethrography SUG.

CONCLUSION: Ultrasound is as efficacious as retrograde urethrogram in the assessment of the male anterior urethra in patients with urethral stricture and may be recommended in the evaluation of this disease, in view of its efficacy, non-invasiveness, ready-availability and lack of exposure to radiation. It may also serve as baseline for other similar studies in our environment.

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