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Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Emerging Sources Citation Index
Anne P. CAMERON
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
INTRODUCTION: Urethral diverticula are a complex problem for the female pelvic surgeon. Given the rarity of the condition most published series are small and single institutional. This is a review article and a meta-analysis including all case series of female urethral diverticulum from the year 2000 to 2015 including only those case series with a minimum of ten subjects.
EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: Twenty-five articles were included and data was sufficient to perform a meta-analysis on patient age, symptoms at presentation, physical exam findings, location of diverticulum, diverticular size, radiological findings, pathology, complications, and recurrence rates.
EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Urethral diverticulum have variable symptom presentation and can mimic many other common conditions, but often present with a palpable urethral mass. Surgical diverticulectomy is the most commonly performed procedure, but does put the patient at risk for de novo stress incontinence and recurrent diverticula are not rare. Patients with pre-existing stress incontinence can be safely offered concomitant autologous pubovaginal sling at the time of diverticulectomy.
CONCLUSIONS: Pathology is benign 97% of the time but one must have a high degree of suspicion in the case of a firm mass or if MRI indicates a mass within the diverticula. Physicians need to have a high degree of suspicion particularly in those patients whose symptoms do not resolve with standard treatment and pelvic MRI is the investigation of choice.