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Purpose:

Cowper’s syringocele is a rare deformity in the male urethra that is a distention of the duct of the bulbourethral (Cowper’s) gland. We report on 7 cases, review the symptoms and pathophysiology, and propose a simplified classification of this uncommon lesion.

Materials and Methods:

We reviewed 7 cases of Cowper’s syringocele diagnosed from 1997 to 1998 at our hospital.

Results:

Cowper’s syringocele was diagnosed in 7 patients 25 to 51 years old with persistent post-void dribbling, frequency, urethral pain, hematuria or sudden urethral discharge. Diagnosis was made with urethrocystoscopy or retrograde urethrogram. Cowper’s syringocele may be closed (a distended cyst-like swelling in the wall of the urethra) or open (an opening enabling urine reflux into the syringocele). In 2 patients asymptomatic open syringocele was diagnosed. In 1 patient symptomatic syringocele resolved spontaneously following an infection. In 4 patients open syringocele was treated with transurethral marsupialization because of persistent post-void dribbling. Postoperatively patients were completely symptom-free with a mean followup of 12 months (range 6 to 23).

Conclusions:

Cowper’s syringocele may be more common than currently realized. Urologists should rule out this possibility in young male patients with lower urinary tract symptoms and persistent post-void dribbling as it can be treated easily.

References

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  • 2 : Late appearance of Cowper's syringocele. J Urol1998; 160: 128. LinkGoogle Scholar
  • 3 : Cowper's syringocele: a classification of dilatations of Cowper's gland duct based upon clinical characteristics of 8 boys. J Urol1983; 129: 111. LinkGoogle Scholar
  • 4 : Lesions of Cowper's glands in children. J Urol1979; 122: 121. LinkGoogle Scholar
  • 5 : A study of the relationship between syringoceles and Cobb's collar. Eur Urol1996; 30: 119. Google Scholar

From the Departments of Urology, Central Military Hospital and University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands

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