The Effect of Major Pelvic Extirpative Surgery on Lower Urinary Tract Function

  • Kalli SpencerEmail author
  • Vincent Tse
Post-Prostatectomy and Acquired Voiding Dysfunction (V Tse, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Post-Prostatectomy and Acquired Voiding Dysfunction


Purpose of Review

This review will explore how lower urinary tract dysfunction may result from pelvic oncological extirpative surgery across multiple disciplines and how to avoid it.

Recent Findings

Minimally invasive colorectal surgery offers superior dexterity, precise movements and improved vision to identify and carefully dissect off neurovascular bundles. This reduces the incidence of postoperative retention and improved subjective and objective urodynamic parameters. Pneumoperitoneum and inappropriate retraction techniques may however still lead to urinary tract dysfunction. Data regarding presacral surgery and its complications is limited. A better understanding of anatomy and modifications to the radical hysterectomy procedure has allowed for improved surgical outcomes and urinary tract function. Cautious dissection of the lateral parametria differentiates the hypogastric plexus (particularly the inferior branch) from vascular structures and ligaments.


Bladder dysfunction can have a significant impact on a patient’s quality of life. Surgical techniques to preserve important neurovascular structures have been described. Despite this, there is still a high incidence of urinary tract dysfunction. Surgical techniques in the future may be better refined to microscopically dissect off neurovascular bundles; improve assisted neurological monitoring; or enhance super-imposed imaging, to optimise and preserve lower urinary tract function.


Bladder dysfunction Voiding dysfunction Pelvic surgery Cancer Colorectal Gynaecology 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Macquarie University School of Health SciencesSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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