Current concepts in the management of anterior urethral strictures
AbstractObjectives: This review paper presents the current trends in the evaluation and treatment of anterior urethral strictures. Stricture disease is recorded as one of the oldest afflictions of mankind and even in the millennium; it is the one disease associated with rapid turn over in treatment options and continuous evolution of new options. The stricture is still a significant burden on the urologist workload right from initiation of treatment and follows up. It may be associated with significant morbidity and deteriorating quality of life and may be frustrating to treat. Current trends are to discover a long lasting satisfactory treatment suitable in most cases ‘the gold standard’.
Methods A review of current concepts in anatomy and the patho-physiologic mechanisms of the anterior stricture has been done. A structured literature search through a MEDLINE search was performed. New urethral substitutes have been compared to other techniques of urethroplasty as seen over the. last decade. Expert surgical consensus and opinion have been reviewed.
Results The anterior urethral stricture is a consequence of major peri-urethral fibrosis and may be very complex if the inflammation is complicated or prolonged. It can be satisfactorily assessed by routine retrograde urethrography and endoscopic assessment for type and complexity. The urethral ultrasound appears to provide more information about the extent of fibrosis and the length of strictures. In review of recent experience, it has proven to be accurate convenient and a cheap complement to already established studies. Oral mucosa, rectal mucosa, bladder mucosa , dermal grafts, tunica vaginalis, tissue culture and synthetic polymers have all been applied over the last decade in the search for the suitable urethral substitute.
The bucccal mucosa is outstanding among several options in the repair of the diseased anterior urethra as popularized by Barbagli. It appears to provide the solution for most situations in the anterior urethral stricture..
Conclusions: The Bucccal mucosal graft(BMG) may as well be the new ‘gold standard' in the management of anterior urethral stricture .