Total urogenital mobilization—an easier way to repair cloacas

A Peña
Journal of Pediatric Surgery 1997, 32 (2): 263-7; discussion 267-8
The surgical treatment of persistent cloaca is a serious challenge. The operation is technically difficult and the final results for urinary and fecal function are far from excellent. The repair of a cloaca includes, among other maneuvers, the separation of the vagina from the urinary tract. This step is a serious technical challenge and is very time consuming. Devascularization of these structures is the main source of complications such as urethro-vaginal fistula, vaginal stricture, and acquired vaginal atresia. To avoid these complications and to facilitate the cloacal repair, a new technical variation using total urogenital mobilization was performed in 11 patients. In this procedure, after the rectum is separated from the vagina, both the urethra and the vagina are mobilized together as a single unit. The surgical time spent during the reconstruction was reduced by approximately 70%. All patients recovered well from the operations and have been followed up for 1 to 14 months. The blood supply of the vagina and urethra in all cases remained excellent. No patient developed urethrovaginal fistula, vaginal stricture, or acquired vaginal atresia. The cosmetic appearance in these patients is superior to the one achieved with previous techniques. Although this maneuver may not render better urinary or fecal control, the urethra is more accessible for catheterization. These preliminary results suggest that the total urogenital mobilization maneuver provides a definite technical advance in the repair of cloaca malformations.

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