Urological situation five years after spinal cord injury

Scand J Urol Nephrol. 1999 Jun;33(3):157-61. doi: 10.1080/003655999750015925.


Objective: To evaluate bladder emptying methods and urinary tract problems five years after spinal cord injury (SCI).

Material and methods: Neurological level, method of bladder emptying and urological investigations were retrieved from the records for all 165 patients admitted to our Centre for Spinal Cord Injured with a traumatic SCI sustained from 1984 to 1988.

Results: A total of 77 patients with completed 5-year control were included in the final analyses. We found that 64% had suprasacral bladder dysfunction, while 23% had infrasacral bladder dysfunction. Plasma-creatinine was normal, both at the initial examination and the 5-year control. From the time in the SCI centre to the 5-year control a trend towards less intermittent catheterization and more use of abdominal pressure was observed. During the follow-up period nine patients (12%) experienced urinary calculi. Six bladder- stones were removed endoscopically. Five had kidney stones; three were left untreated, one was removed by extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy and one by open surgery. Four patients (5%) had renograms with functional distribution outside the limits 40-60%. Three patients had bladder neck incision performed, one had a sacral anterior root stimulator implanted and one had a continent Kock reservoir. No sphincterotomies were performed. Fifty-one had received medicine to facilitate bladder emptying. Eighty-one percent had been treated for at least one urinary tract infection (UTI), 22% had 2-3 UTI/year, and 12% 4 or more UTI/year. Twelve percent had been on prophylactic low-dose antibiotics.

Conclusion: The final outcome regarding urological complications is satisfactory even with our conservative handling of the SCI individuals.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Kidney / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / complications
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / physiopathology*
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Time Factors
  • Urinary Bladder / physiopathology*
  • Urinary Tract Infections / physiopathology
  • Urodynamics