Surgical Treatment of Anterior Urethral Stricture Diseases: Brief Overview

International Braz J Urol 2007; 33: 461-469.

We performed an up-to-date review of the surgical techniques suggested for the treatment of anterior urethral strictures. References for this review were identified by searching PubMed and MEDLINE using the search terms “urethral stricture” or “urethroplasty” from 1995 to 2006. Descriptive statistics of the articles were provided. Meta-analyses or other multivariate designs were not employed. Out of 327 articles, 50 (15%) were determined to be germane to this review. Eight abstracts were referenced as the authors of this review attended the meetings where the abstract results were presented, thus it was possible to collect additional information on such abstracts. Urethrotomy continues to be the most commonly used technique, but it does have a high failure rate and many patients progress to surgical repair. Buccal mucosa has become the most popular substitute material in urethroplasty; however, the skin appears to have a longer follow-up. Free grafts have been making a comeback, with fewer surgeons using genital flaps. Short bulbar strictures are amenable using primary anastomosis, with a high success rate. Longer strictures are repaired using ventral or dorsal graft urethroplasty, with the same success rate. New tools such as fibrin glue or engineered material will become a standard in future treatment. In reconstructive urethral surgery, the superiority of one approach over another is not yet clearly defined. The surgeon must be competent in the use of various techniques to deal with any condition of the urethra presented at the time of surgery.