Objectives. Preoperative comorbidities associated with microvascular disease may contribute to the development of bladder neck contracture (BNC) by alteration of anastomotic healing. We investigated potential risk factors for development of BNC after radical prostatectomy (RP) and reviewed management of this complication. Methods. A retrospective review of 467 consecutive patients (mean age 63.2 years) undergoing RP between 1991 and 1999 was performed. In all cases, the bladder neck was tailored to 20 to 22F in a racket handle fashion. After mucosal eversion of the reconstructed bladder neck, a mucosa-to-mucosa vesicourethral anastomosis was created over an 18 to 22F catheter using 4 to 6 anastomotic sutures. The relationship between comorbidities identified preoperatively by patient interview and medical record review (coronary artery disease [CAD], diabetes mellitus [DM], hypertension [HTN], cerebral vascular accident, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and smoking history) and the incidence of BNC was determined. Risk factors including prior transurethral prostatectomy (TURP), estimated blood loss (EBL), and operative time (OR time) were also evaluated. Factors were evaluated for their ability to predict BNC using both univariate and multivariate analysis. Treatment results for BNC were also assessed. Results. A total of 52 (11.1%) patients developed BNC. Current cigarette smoking resulted in a significantly higher (26%) rate of BNC (P <0.001). The BNC rate was also increased in patients with CAD (26%, P <0.001), HTN (19%, P = 0.015), and DM (21%, P = 0.030). Average OR time was longer (271 versus 249 minutes, P = 0.025) and EBL was greater (1639 versus 1092 mL, P <0.001) in patients developing a BNC. In multivariate analysis, current cigarette smoking was the strongest predictor of BNC and independent of other factors (P <0.001). BNC was not related to prior TURP, type of anastomotic suture used, size of catheter, or duration of catheterization. Patients were treated with transurethral dilation (73%) or transurethral incision (27%) and 58% responded to the initial treatment. No patient became incontinent as a result of the treatment for BNC. Conclusions. Several comorbidities associated with microvascular disease are significant risk factors for development of BNC after RP. Current cigarette smoking in particular is a strong predictor. Transurethral dilation and transurethral incision are equally effective as initial treatment of BNC.
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