The effect of modified transurethral sphincterotomy on autonomic dysreflexia

J Urol. 1986 Jan;135(1):83-5. doi: 10.1016/s0022-5347(17)45524-8.


Autonomic dysreflexia continues to be a major problem in spinal cord injury patients. In our report 16 patients with spinal cord lesions above the T6 level and a history of autonomic dysreflexia also had detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia. Of these patients 12 (75 per cent) had evidence of dysreflexia during cystometry. In addition, the dysreflexic response in blood pressure was shown to correlate with the high intravesical and urethral pressures measured during cystometry. Modified transurethral sphincterotomies subsequently were performed on all patients as recommended therapy for detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia. Repeat cystometry revealed significant decreases in intravesical and urethral pressures compared to before sphincterotomy (p less than 0.001) along with an associated significant decrease in blood pressure (p less than 0.01). Other dysreflexic responses also were markedly attenuated. These results suggest an association among detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia, high intravesical and urethral pressures, and autonomic dysreflexia. Our data indicate further that the frequency and magnitude of autonomic dysreflexia can be diminished significantly by modified external sphincterotomy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood Pressure
  • Humans
  • Manometry
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Pressure
  • Reflex, Abnormal / etiology
  • Reflex, Abnormal / physiopathology
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / complications*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / physiopathology
  • Urinary Bladder / innervation
  • Urinary Bladder / physiopathology
  • Urinary Bladder, Neurogenic / etiology
  • Urinary Bladder, Neurogenic / physiopathology
  • Urinary Bladder, Neurogenic / surgery*
  • Urodynamics