JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Prospective analysis of erectile dysfunction after anterior urethroplasty: incidence and recovery of function.

Journal of Urology 2010 Februrary
PURPOSE: Anterior urethroplasty has been shown to negatively impact erectile function. Recovery of function is common but the likelihood and extent of recovery have not been fully elucidated.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Between October 2006 and May 2008 men undergoing anterior urethroplasty were enrolled in a prospective study to evaluate the effects of urethroplasty on erectile function. The International Index of Erectile Function was completed preoperatively and on all subsequent postoperative visits. Preoperative and postoperative erectile function was compared.

RESULTS: A total of 52 patients who underwent anterior urethroplasty were included in the study. Repair locations were bulbar (35) and penile (17). Of the patients undergoing bulbar urethroplasty 20 had excision and primary anastomosis, and 15 had augmented anastomotic repair. All penile repairs were ventral onlay repair (11) or inlay repair in 2 stages (6). Postoperative erectile dysfunction was noted in 20 (38%) men, of whom 18 recovered fully at a mean postoperative period of 190 days (range 92 to 398). In patients with normal preoperative erectile function bulbar urethroplasty was more likely than penile urethroplasty to cause erectile dysfunction (76% vs 38%, p = 0.05). Within the bulbar urethra excision and primary anastomosis repairs led to slightly higher erectile dysfunction rates than augmented anastomotic repairs (50% vs 26%, p = 0.16).

CONCLUSIONS: Anterior urethroplasty caused erectile dysfunction in approximately 40% of patients, although recovery was seen in most by 6 months. Bulbar urethroplasty appears to affect erectile function to a greater extent than penile urethroplasty, which may be explained by the proximity of the bulbar urethra to the nerves responsible for erection.

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